Baked Macaroni Pudding made with cow's cheese, raisins, eggs, milk and a touch of sugar, a delicious sweet pudding recipe that is incredibly delicious and filling. It's a popular dish in Romania, where our " macaroane cu branza" is usually enjoyed as a meal on its own.
What is macaroni pudding
Macaroni pudding might sound like an odd dish, given that it's a sweet one, rather than a savoury main meal, but it's as good as it looks.
The Romanian "macaroane cu branza" translates as "macaroni with cheese", but unlike the Western dish, which is pasta smothered in a savoury cheesy sauce, our macaroni is made with cow's cheese, eggs and milk, and sweetened with sugar and raisins.
You may find recipes without raisins, but I highly recommend using them, they are naturally sweet and work perfectly well with this dish. As for sugar, it's up to one's taste buds how much to add.
Ingredients used & Variations
- cow's cheese - you can either make your own - I have my delicious farmer's cheese recipe, or supermarkets may sell it as " salad cheese". White brined cheese is also good. Alternatively, feta cheese is a good choice if you don't mind the stronger sheep and goat's cheese taste.
- eggs - at room temperature
- macaroni - or indeed any other pasta shape
- sugar - caster or granulated sugar
- raisins - for other currants
- milk - for loosening up the cheese mixture
Step-by-step photos and instructions
- cook the macaroni according to the packet instructions
- meanwhile, add the cheese blocks to a large bowl and use a fork to crumble them
- add the eggs and mix well to get a paste
- add the sugar and raisins and mix again
- pour the milk over the cheese mixture, and mix again
- butter an oven-safe dish
- when the pasta is ready, drain the water and transfer it to the prepared dish
- pour 3 quarters of the cheesy mix to the pasta and give everything a good stir to combine
- spread the rest of the cheesy mixture over the pasta
- bake in the preheated oven at 180 degrees Celsius (350 Fahrenheit, 160 fan oven) for 35-40 minutes until the cheese is set and the top is slightly golden
The pasta must be cooked before adding it to the oven, as it will not have time to cook just in the cheesy sauce. Although an aldente pasta can cook further in the oven and soften nicely, uncooked pasta won't do.
Other pudding recipes
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- 2 blocks cow's cheese ( 2 x 200 g or 2 x 7oz)
- 2 cups macaroni
- 3 eggs
- ¼ cup milk
- 3 tablespoon caster sugar + more for sprinkling over the dish
- ½ cup raisins
- Cook the pasta according to the packet instructions.
- In the meantime, add the blocks of cheese to a large bowl and use a fork to crumble them - alternatively you can grate the cheese if it's not crumbly.
- Add the eggs and mix well to a paste.
- Add the sugar, milk, raisins, and mix again.
- Butter an oven-proof dish.
- Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (350 Fahrenheit, 160 fan oven).
- When the pasta is cooked, drain the water and transfer it to the prepared dish.
- Pour over 3 quarters of the cheesy mixture and mix everything well to coat the pasta.
- Top with the remaining cheesy mixture.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes until the cheese is set and the top is lightly golden.
- Sprinkle more sugar over the top, then leave it to cool down slightly before slicing.
- The pasta must be cooked before adding it to the oven, as it will not have time to cook just in the cheesy sauce. Although an aldente pasta can cook further in the oven and soften nicely, uncooked pasta won't do.