Monday, December 28, 2009

The Ultimate Macaroni Cheese Challenge kicks off now!

OK, now you can't face another mouthful of roast turkey in any guise it's time to get cracking on creating the Ultimate Macaroni Cheese as announced in my post of December 17th.

To recap you can enter any of the following 4 categories (I've just added an extra one) though not the same entry in each category

* Best original recipe - meaning original as in invented by you rather than wacky/off the wall. We’re not particularly looking for recipes that include fish sauce though I wouldn’t rule them out.

* Most mouthwatering mac’n’cheese pic
That gives you scope to make someone else’s macaroni cheese (Simon Hopkinson’s seems to be a strong contender so far) and create a drop-dead gorgeous photo - or series of photos - of it

* Best use of artisanal cheese
Let’s celebrate the fact we have some of the best cheeses in the world in the UK by challenging you to use them in your macaroni cheese. A good category to enter if you like your mac'n'cheese plain and unadorned

* Best drink match
This was suggested by Denise Medrano aka The Wine Sleuth for mac'n'cheese loving winos - or beer or cider lovers. Don't feel you have to limit yourself to wine. What's the perfect way to wash down your macaroni cheese?

The judges will be Denise for this last category, cookery writer Xanthe Clay of the Daily Telegraph who will judge the recipe category, food photographer Marie-Louise Avery who will decide who has submitted the best pic or series of pix and Jess Trethowan of Trethowan's Dairy (makers of Gorwydd Caerphilly) who will judge the best use of artisanal cheese. (I've also recruited food writer Marlena Spieler who reminds me she has written a whole book on Macaroni cheese.) There will be a prize for each winner which I'll announce shortly once I've done a bit more arm-twisting.

Post your recipe/photo/drink match on your blog with a link to this post - letting me know, obviously, that you've done so - or send it to me at fibeckett AT live DOT com (see contact details on the blog). The closing date is January 18th. (NOW EXTENDED TO 11.59PM ON THE 24TH as there are a lot of entries in the pipeline that haven't made it through!)

Good luck!

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38 comments:

Miss Cakehead said...

Good work I love this even more that there is no PR spin behind it - I shall be entering an evil version!

Fiona Beckett said...

Evil as you like - look forward to seeing it!

Howard V said...

Does 'artisanal'=British?

Garlic Confit said...

Wine matching entry posted.
Recipe entry soon.
Photo entry only if the insurance company give me my money afte rmy camera was stolen!

Fiona Beckett said...

Think I'm going to insist it is Howard. It being a British-based competition!

And well done, garlicconfit - you're quick off the mark! You're entitled to enter other categories but can't enter the same recipe in the original recipe and artisanal cheese categories.

Garlic Confit said...

Recipe Entry - Posted.
I have spent over 24 hours thinking about macaroni and cheese. Brilliant.

Cheesewench said...

I'm absolutely going to enter. I can't wait to see all the entries!

Fiona Beckett said...

With a name like yours Cheesewench you have to really!

Cheryl Arkison said...

http://tiny.cc/c4jtG
Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese

This is my go-to Mac and Cheese. Family friendly, and although I generally hate the concept of hiding vegetables from eaters, this one works so well.

meemalee said...

Hi Fiona

Here's my entry for Best Original Recipe:

meemalee's kitchen: Macaroni Cheese

Happy New Year!
meemalee x

Eco Worrier said...

Here's my entry for the best original recipe and I'd like to enter the phot at the end as well too please..

AmuseBoucheUK Ultimate Mac N Cheese challenge

Carmelita said...

I just want to query the word "artisanal". Is it a new word?

I have always said "artisan" cheese or ham or olive oil. Is using "artisan" wrong?

Thanks!

Fiona Beckett said...

Ingenious idea Cheryl. I can imagine that would work really well.

Meemalee, I’ve clocked your entry - don’t worry. (And Happy New Year to you too!)

And thanks EcoWorrier - that’s certainly an original entry!

I don’t think it matters too much if you say ‘artisan’ or ‘artisanal’ Carmelita. What we’re talking about either way is a farmhouse, largely handmade cheese, made mainly from milk from the cheesemaker’s own animals.

BribedwithFood said...

What a fun competition, Fiona!
I will definitely be entering with my newly-improved recipe!

Matt said...

Great idea! Click my name for a link to my entry for "best original recipe"

I may also enter the best photo one, but need to make it again first. mmmm macaroni cheese.

Fiona Beckett said...

Thanks for the entry, Matt!

Keep 'em coming . . . .

Gail said...

Have been tasked with finding a good mac and cheese recipe for ages, and thanks to you discovered Simon Hopkinson's... legendary! And managed to take photos during it too, hurrah!

http://tiny.cc/macandcheese431

Fiona Beckett said...

Lovely, Gail. Love the heart-shaped baking dish too ;-)

ginandcrumpets said...

Great challenge, really cheered up my mid-Christmas/New Year meals. Posted my recipe here: http://bit.ly/7FNSiW

Fiona Beckett said...

Terrific! Will do a state-of-play email soon. 9 days to go . . .

Swedish Mike said...

Fiona,

I would like to enter this post into the Best Original Recipe contest.

If it's ok I'd like to enter the photo for that post into the photo contest too. The direct link to that photo is here .

Thanks,Mike

Fiona Beckett said...

in theory you're supposed to enter for one or the other Mike but up to the judge of that section. Interesting way of doing the sauce. Less labour-intensive than classic British version.

Swedish Mike said...

Fiona,

Typical of me to try and bend the rules ;) I'm happy just to enter the recipe contest, that way we avoid too much rule breaking.

It's the classic Swedish way of doing it, we're probably lazier than the Brits in this case.

// Mike

mathildescuisine said...

Recipe on its way very soon!

Fiona Beckett said...

Don't panic, Mathilde - or anyone else. Just trying to secure a rather good prize so have extended the deadline by a week till midnight on the 24th.

James said...

Gr8! Extended to 24th - phew might finish before midnight tonight then.....

Lizzie said...

Hi Fiona,

MAcaroni cheese recipe here: http://lizzieeatslondon.blogspot.com/2010/01/macaroni-cheese.html Original category, I reckon!

mathildescuisine said...

Dear Fiona,

As promised! http://bit.ly/7raKCh

Andrew said...

stand aside everyone... the barrow version is on its way ;-)

Fiona Beckett said...

We wait with bated breath . . . ;-)

Lucy said...

Hi Fiona, here's mine and I've included some thoughts about wine. Enjoy the judging!
http://winefoodotherpleasures.blogspot.com/2010/01/macaroni-cheese-ultimate-comfort-food.html

Fiona Beckett said...

So glad you've entered the wine category, Lucy - and the mac looks great!

Sharmila said...

Hi there, here is my entry - I think for the artisanal cheese category! http://bit.ly/7m4xXG

scandilicious said...

Hello there, here's an entry for the best use of artisanal cheese :)

http://scandilicious.blogspot.com/2010/01/mac-n-cheese-baby.html

ScottCanCook said...

Hey Fiona.. Almost forgot to post them to you.. They are on my site, but not been published to the front page, which i will do in the week.

Original Link:
http://www.scottcancook.com/cook/maineats/156-mac-n-manchego

And the artisanal
http://www.scottcancook.com/cook/maineats/157-macandmont

Andrew said...

My entry - sadly the light was fading when it came to the photos...

http://www.spittoon.biz/a_wine_for_macaroni_and_cheese.html

Fiona Beckett said...

My God - a sudden flurry of late -and very good - entries. Well done all! It's going to be tough coming to a decision!

Rob at EAT PICTURES said...

main photograph here
http://www.flickr.com/photos/eatpictures/4301142363/in/set-72157623152280285/

slideshow sequence here
http://www.flickr.com/photos/eatpictures/sets/72157623152280285/show/