|Frugal Café Site Search:|
Ann B. Davis's Yankee Doodle Macaroni and CheeseBy Vicki McClure Davidson
Actress Ann B. Davis played the incomparable, amusing, and lovable Alice, housekeeper and cook on the popular 1960s family sitcom The Brady Bunch.
Show creator and producer Sherwood Schwartz has explained that of all character actresses in Hollywood, Davis was his one and only choice in the role of Alice. At the time, however, Davis was performing a one-woman show in Seattle, and so, massive efforts to find an actress to cast in the role ensued. Schwartz was looking for someone like Davis who had a warm sense of humor and easy-going comedic timing, as well as her heart and conveyance of reality working with the Brady parents and children. She was to be a barometer for the storms that cropped up in the blended family, and had to come across as genuine during the show's dramatic scenes.
The studio discovered that there was no other actress like Davis who could convincingly pull off the role of Alice. Despite the cost, Schwartz finally advised Paramount Studio to buy out the two remaining weeks of her Seattle contract. As Schwartz recalled, "She's one of a kind... When they told me that would be expensive, I replied, 'Good things are often expensive.'" He attributed much of the show's success and five-year run to Davis.
Prior to The Brady Bunch, Davis played the role of Charmaine 'Schultzy' Schultz on The Bob Cummings Show during the mid to late 1950s. Her popularity in that role was tremendous, and it earned her a number of acting nominations, as well as two Emmys and three TV Land awards. She also had a recurring role in the 1960s on The John Forsythe Show.
Collaborating with two writers, Davis published Alice's Brady Bunch Cookbook in 1994. The cookbook is chock full of easy, inexpensive recipes, most of which are designed for kids to like them. This is but one of those recipes. The cookbook also has fascinating behind-the-scenes recollections of Davis' from the sitcom.
Source: Davis, Alice B., with Ron Newcomer and Diane Smolen, Alice's Brady Bunch Cookbook, Rutledge Hill Press, Nashville, TN, 1994.
Budget-minded families know that pasta is a favorite with kids and easy on the food budget. What makes this macaroni and cheese dish unique is that it has three different cheeses and two-thirds cup white wine. The wine gives it a lovely richness. This is so much better tasting and cheaper than the boring packaged macaroni and cheese (real cheese, not that orange powdered stuff), and you get a whole lot more... something hungry teenage boys who want seconds or thirds will appreciate.
In a pinch, you can use different cheeses, and may latch onto several slightly different versions of Davis's recipe that your family enjoys. Adding a bit of minced garlic to the butter or margarine as it sautés will add additional flavor. Experiment, taste, and experiment some more!
Ann B. Davis's Yankee Doodle Macaroni and Cheese
- 5 T. butter or margarine
- 3/4 c. minced onion
- 3 T. all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1/3 c. heavy cream
- 2/3 c. white wine
- 1-1/3 c. ricotta cheese
- 1-1/2 c. grated Cheddar cheese
- 1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 16-oz. package elbow macaroni, cooked and drained (do this ahead of making the cheese sauce)
In a large saucepan, melt the butter or margarine and sauté the onions until softened. Stir in the flour and pepper. Cook for 2 minutes.
Add the wine and cream, and bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat and simmer gently, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens, about 3 minutes.
Stir in the ricotta, Cheddar, and Parmesan. Heat just until the Cheddar is melted. Toss with macaroni and serve.
Alice's Note: You never go wrong with this dish.Makes 8 servings.
Related Readings & Recipes
Pasta Perfection: How to Cook Pasta Perfectly Every Time
Rickshaw Rice Skillet Meal
Traditional and Unique: Six Different Holiday Green Bean Casserole Recipes
Creamy Tuna Skillet Casserole
Frugal Versions of Famous Soups: Ronald Reagan's Hamburger Soup, Soup Nazi's Cream of Sweet Potato Soup, and More
Skillet Macaroni and Beef Recipe
Beautiful Beans Bonanza: Yummy, Filling, Money-Saving Recipes for Beans
Frugal Café Blog Zone: Fab Food Friday Fotos & Recipes: Sunday Chuck Roast, Chilaquiles Casserole, Asian Lentil Rice Wrap, Chocolate Streusel Banana Coffee Cake, Zucchini Gratin, Gluten-Free Walnut Apple Cake, Bacon & Leek Risotto, Mac & Cheese Nacho Bake, More Thrifty Recipes
Frugal Café Blog Zone: Celebration of Awesome Autumn & Oktoberfest Food Edition, with Frugal Recipes
Frugal Café Blog Zone: Fab Food Friday Fotos and Recipes: Retro Bread Pudding, Onion Frittata, Egyptian Kebabs, KC-Style Pork Spare Ribs, Maple Bacon Cookies, Egg-free Muffins, Cheesy Broccoli Rice Casserole, & More Thrifty Recipes
Frugal Café Blog Zone: Fab Food Friday Fotos and Recipes: BBQ Beer-Can Chicken, Best Caramel Corn, Revithosoupa, Zucchini Cookies, Dirty Rice & Shrimp, Pumpkin Curry, Salads, Tandoori Chicken, Split Pea Soup, Smoked Fish Cakes, Corn Pudding, Recipes, & More
99-Cent Only Store Gumption & Imagination... Delicious, Cheap Meals
Celebrity Recipes: Tim McGraw's Favorite Chicken and Dumplings
Celebrity Recipes: Pearl Bailey's Pork Chops and Green Apples and Pearl Bailey's Mama's Cabbage
Celebrity Recipes: Joe Frazier's Smokin' Joe's Chicken
Celebrity Recipes: Martha Stewart's Lemon Squares
Frugal Café Blog Zone: Fab Food Friday Fotos and Recipes: Hamburger Corn Pone Pie, Spaghetti Bolognaise, Spicy Collard Flowers, Sausage-Stuffed Apples, Butternut Squash Macaroni & Cheese, Chicken Satay, Soups, Fish with Onions & Mushrooms, Frugal Recipes, & More
Celebrity Recipes: Lillian Hellman's Decent Scrambled Eggs
Celebrity Recipes: Emeril Lagasse's Rice Pudding
Celebrity Recipes: Emeril Lagasse's Boiled Artichokes
Celebrity Recipes: Loretta Lynn's Crispy Fried Chicken
Celebrity Recipes: Jessica Simpson's Chicken and Dumplings
Celebrity Recipes: Loretta Lynn's Red Bean Salad Chefs' Culinary Secrets & Cooking Philosophies | Tom Colicchio & Rachael Ray
Draining Your Dollars: Consumer Reports' Revealing Info on 8 Overpriced or Unhealthy Food Items
Frugal Café's Savvy 16: 16 Kitchen & Shopping Tricks to Save You Money & Time: Buying Whole Chickens, Storing Mushrooms, Wooden Spoons, Chopped Nuts, Breads, & More
Frugal Café's Savvy 16 Redux: 16 More Kitchen & Shopping Tricks to Save You Money & Time: Chopping Jalepeños, Whipped Frosting, Garlic Mincing, Gravy Messes, Eggs, Zucchini, & More
Frugal Café's Savvy 16, Volume 3: 16 More Kitchen & Shopping Tricks to Save You Money & Time: Oiling the Pasta Pot, Slicing Eggplant, Frying Ground Beef, Cleaning Leeks, Preventing Tomato Stains, & More
Baking Soda... From Frugal Cleaner to Thrifty Freshener to Beauty Aid, So Many Cheap, Easy, & Effective Uses
Ordinary Kitchens Have Magic... Cool Vintage and Retro Kitchens of Yesteryear
<< Back to Directory of Collection of Celebrities' Frugal Recipes
Davis, Alice B., with Ron Newcomer and Diane Smolen, Alice's Brady Bunch Cookbook, Rutledge Hill Press, Nashville, TN, 1994.
IMDb website, 'Ann B. Davis,' (http://imdb.com).