Martha Stewart Adorns Mac And Cheese With A Crunchy Parmesan Topping

Martha Stewart gives her mac and cheese a tangy bite by adding a little nutmeg, but to really help her version of this dish make a statement and arrive to your plate in style, Stewart revealed in a cooking demonstration on YouTube she serves it in mini ramekins and adorns each individual serving with a little bit of frico. Frico is simply another, albeit fancier, name for a parmesan crisp. This little addition not only ups the presentation, but its rich, savory crunch is a lovely juxtaposition to the velvety smooth cheese sauce of the mac and cheese. 

Beyond how delicious they are and how well they pair with mac and cheese, what you will love about making your own parmesan crips is the fact that they are a one-ingredient recipe. You just need grated parmesan, spread into flat, miniature shapes — generally a circle, but use your imagination — on a baking sheet, and popped into the oven to cook until they are melted and crisp. You can even form your frico into little bowls that can hold your mac and cheese if you want to really get creative. 

Change up the cheese

The beloved hostess also shared that she uses four different kinds of cheeses to create her version of this childhood favorite, which includes parmesan, fontina, extra sharp white cheddar, and gruyere. Stewart notes that each adds its own flavor and texture to the creamy sauce. This is important to keep in mind when deciding on what cheese you use to make your frico. These crips don't have to be made from parmesan. You can use a different cheese that complements the cheesy flavors and elements you are working with. 

A cacio e pepe frico could be made using a combination of pecorino and asiago cheeses, while a sprinkle of pepper adds a bit of a kick that's perfect with mac and cheese. If you prefer the sharp and salty taste of a sharp cheddar, shred a little extra to make your frico, and don't be afraid to experiment with those beautiful green herbs. Basil, rosemary, and even mint can add a depth of flavor to these cheesy crips.