Friday 8 January 2010

Recipe - Macaroni box / Makaronilåda

The English title of this recipe is a direct translation of the Swedish one. Another title could have been pasta bake but I kind of like the original title.

I consider this dish to be a complete and utter winter classic. With the current state of the weather here in England I started to think about what we used to be fed when I was a kid and we came in for dinner after a day out in the snow. This was one of the first dishes that popped up in my mind.

This is a great dish to have in your repertoire. It is quick and easy to make and you can freestyle it quite a bit. If you don't have lardons at home, use some smoked ham or bacon instead for example. If you got some lettuce or ingredients for a salad at home, serve that on the side. You could even make some garlic bread to pad out the meal a bit.

One thing, and I know some of you might object to this, that I must have with this dish is tomato ketchup. It just doesn't feel right without a good dollop of Heinz with it.

Ok, enough reminiscing about my childhood meals - let's head over to the recipe instead.


Linda, from with knife and fork, let me know about a competition for the Ultimate Macaroni and Cheese over at The Cheeselover blog. She said in the comment that she thought I should enter this recipe. Who am I to question her judgement? ;) So consider this entered into the contest.


Ingredients (serves 2 - 4)
200g macaroni, uncooked
1 onion, diced (red or yellow)
200g lardons
Olive oil
Grated cheese

Egg-milk mix
3 eggs
250ml milk

Pre-heat the oven to 200c.

Cook the macaroni as per the instructions on the package. Once cooked, drain and keep on the side.

In the meantime heat the oil in a frying pan on a medium heat. Sweat the onions for a couple of minutes before adding the lardons. Let this fry until the lardons are cooked and starting to crisp up. Mix in the macaroni and turn off the heat.

Pour the macaroni and lardon mix into a oven safe casserole dish of a suitable size.

Whisk together the milk and egg and season well. Pour this over the macaroni mix and finish off with a good layer of grated cheese.

Cook in the oven for 20 - 30 minutes or until the egg-milk mix has set and the cheese turns golden. You can always turn on the grill towards the end of the cooking to brown the cheese some extra.



  1. What are lardons Mike? This looks very good.


  2. Laura,

    Thank you very much!

    Lardons are basically chunky pieces of bacon. Have a look here for a picture and more info.

    // Mike

  3. Thsi looks really yum and you should entire this in @food_writers mac 'n' cheese competition here:
    Go on you know you want to :)

  4. Linda,

    Thanks for the kind words and many thanks for the heads-up re the competition.

    I normally never enter anything like that but this time I might give it a go!

    Thanks again!

    // Mike

  5. Its very cold in Stockholm tonight, I think I will cook this for me dinner!

    I am the opposite to you Mike. I am a Brit in Sweden ;-)

    Cracking blog!

  6. Ah Mike, very very nice.

    I cooked this last night. Love the simplicity of it and the amazing taste. Just what was needed after shopping for a few hours in Södermalm in minus 10.

    If you click my name I have added some photos of my effort...

  7. Shane,

    I'm really happy that you found your way here and even happier that you like what you see.

    I had a look at the photos and your effort looks ace, I love the idea of putting some bacon on top too. I'll have to steal that one for next time! ;)

    I think there's some irony in it somewhere. That a Swede in England is teaching a Englishman in Sweden how to cook Swedish 'husmanskost' :)

    // Mike

  8. Ha ha here is some more irony..

    I was at the opening of the new Marriot Hotel in Stockholm last week with work.

    One of the dishes was makaronilåda. The chef did well, great dish but it was what he served with it that made it for me....lingon!

    Worked really really well and I will do the same next time I cook this up.

    Thanks for the inspiration and keep up the great blog!

  9. Shane,

    I've never actually tried it with lingonberries. I must admit that I am still a bit of a heathen and eat it with ketchup.

    Now you've got me thinking about how it would work so I'll go for some lingonberry jam with it next time. ;)

    // Mike

  10. It was served as a side to the Makaroni and I thought it worked well.

    Nothing wrong with Tommy Sauce, I had some with Hot Thai banana sauce, i am probably more of a heathen than you ;-)


  11. Dude, there's never a wrong time or place for some good Hot Thai Banana Sauce. That shit rocks! ;)

    // Mike

  12. Swedish Mike, I hope you get this! We have a foreign exchange student from Sweden here in our town. He was very excited when his host family said they were making "macaroni" (traditional American mac & cheese). When they poured the liquid cheese on the noodles, his mood sank considerably. LOL - Could this be the recipe he's used to? I'd like to surprise him.

  13. Oh what a brilliant recipe, thanks a lot for sharing it!


Please leave a comment. Positive or negative - all comments are welcome and useful. I do enjoy hearing what you think of my posts, what is good and what needs improving so please post away.

// Mike