A few weeks ago I cooked something I’ve wanted to make my entire life: I made Macaroni and Cheese from scratch. It turned out so good that I made it again a week or two later with cavatappi pasta and made sure to set some aside in the fridge. I had big plans…
I love the Cheesecake factory. Their menu has something for everyone: Thai, Chinese, Italian, pizza, pasta, and everything in between. They also happen to have killer appetizers. Their Buffalo Chicken Blasts are to die for and their Tamales are heavenly. I fell in love with their Mac and Cheese balls after the first bite. Cheesy, crunchy, gooey- there’s not much better. And, as I do whenever I eat anything that I love, I wondered if I could accomplish this on my own- if I could make the Perfect Mac and Cheese balls myself…
…Back to my plan. I didn’t know how I was going to do it but I was going to make the mac and cheese balls a reality. I looked at lots of recipes online and most looked overly complicated. I decided I was just going to jump right in. They weren’t too difficult to make but were a bit messy. However, they were scrumptious and so worth the cheesy mess.
Mac and Cheese Balls
1 cup macaroni and cheese (click link for recipe)
1 large egg
1/2 cup italian breadcrumbs, more if needed
Canola or Vegetable oil- enough for frying
1. Save about a cup of macaroni and cheese from the mixture before baking. Allow to cool completely after mixed with sauce and place in the fridge wrapped in plastic wrap until needed.
2. On a pan, lay out some parchment paper. I didn’t have any lying around so I used Reynolds wrap and it turned out ok. Remove large balled mixture and start to form smaller balls. The 1 cup mixture made about 4-5 balls. This is a messy task but so worth it. Place Mac and Cheese balls on paper and cover with plastic wrap. Place in freezer for at least 2-3 hours.
3. When the Mac and Cheese balls are ready to be cooked, start heating canola or vegetable oil to medium heat. Set 2 bowls up- 1 for dipping and 1 for dredging. I used 1 egg, scrambled, and italian breadcrumbs, but I’m sure you could use egg whites and panko as well.
4. Remove Mac and Cheese balls from freezer and dip into the egg mixture. Cover generously with breadcrumbs and place in the hot oil. Fry each until golden brown on both sides, flipping carefully once, and serve immediately with tomato sauce.
While I wouldn’t say they were exactly like the Mac and Cheese Balls at the Cheesecake Factory- they came pretty close and were exactly what I was going for. Another win for Christine!