After spending decades chilling with chicken nuggets and PB&J on the kids' menu, mac and cheese has finally grown up. Forget the neon orange, powdered, box versions of yesteryear, now most restaurants feature a variation of the gooey comfort food with specialty cheeses like gruyere or truffled white cheddar.
It should be no surprise, then, that the resurrection of this childhood staple has brought an influx of in-noodle-vation. Recently the Huffington Post ran a piece titled "10 Things to Do With Mac and Cheese Before You Die," which showcased everything from mac and cheese sushi--which utilizes cheesy noodles in place of rice--to ketchup-glistened, mac and cheese meatloaf.
Boise's Pie Hole has jumped on the crazy mac and cheese train, offering a mac and cheese past-za.
"We do it as just a slice of the day ... People come in all the time and ask about it. We've taken numbers before and whenever we make it, we'll just give someone a call," said Ally Resch, manager at downtown Pie Hole.
The Basque Market also features a mac and cheeky take on the classic: mac and cheese croquetas.
"First Thursday landed on April Fools Day and so we tried to make everything look like a Basque food, but it was something that is typically American," explained Basque Market employee Kyle Harbacheck.
The Basque Market makes its mac and cheese with asiago or manchego, lets it cool, then forms it into balls, rolls them in breadcrumbs and drops them in the deep fryer.