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mac ‘n’ cheese revisited

January 5, 2017

There was a bunch of recipes from Gordon Ramsey in the Times Saturday magazine last week on the theme of comfort food, and one of the recipes was for mac ‘n’ cheese.

What? You’re not American, Ramsey. Don’t call it mac ‘n’ cheese. You mean macaroni cheese. I’ve blogged before about how our homely homegrown English name for this dish is being supplanted by its groovier American cousin. It’s happening even faster now and I don’t like it. Of course there is nothing wrong with the American version if you’re American, but it doesn’t sound right in British English. Macaroni cheese really does suggest comfort food: nursery food, store-cupboard food, convalescents’ food, something-eaten-with-a-spoon-out-of-a-bowl-on-your-lap-in-front-of-the-telly-food. But mac ‘n’ cheese has completely different connotations. It’s cooler. Funkier. Grittier. Food you’d eat in a groovy diner. Mac ‘n’ cheese, rock ‘n’ roll, drum ‘n’ bass, down ‘n’ dirty, yeah!

No, no thank you: give me my bland creamy comforting good old English macaroni cheese, please.

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6 Comments
  1. Simon Carter permalink

    Couldn’t agree more!
    Jamie Oliver’s website has a “recipe” for Sunny side up Eggs which describes them as fried eggWell, yes. That’s because they are fried eggs and “recipe” is obviously a stretch.
    My wife caused consternation in an east London chip shop by absent mindedly asking for fries. The owner was quite outraged.

  2. Your right! Mac and Cheese reminds me of a burger from macdonalds or something.

  3. Simon Carter permalink

    It also sounds like the latest cop show from America. He’s a no-nonsense detective from Glasgow and she’s a farm girl from Wisconsin.

  4. Brilliant! Someone ought to write that show…

  5. Mark Brafield permalink

    I was once waiting for a friend on Waterloo Station and went to a well – known burger chain to ask for a cup of coffee with milk but no sugar. The response to my order was ‘with fries ?’. From that point on I was never sure if I ought to ask for coffee ‘with milk but without sugar or fries’.

  6. Simon Carter! permalink

    It’s called cross selling; the same principle Amazon employ with their lists of items other customers have bought. In the Waterloo case carried a bit far but presumably after a while it becomes an automatic response to any order. Even one for fries.

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