Macaroni and Cheese (Leo Tolstoy's Family Style)

"One of the Leo Tolstoy's family recipes. In 1874, Stepan Bers published The Cookbook and gave it as a gift to his sister, countess Sophia Tolstaya, the wife of the great Russian novelist, Leo Tolstoy. The book contained a collection of Tolstoy family recipes, the dishes they served to their family and friends."
photo by S.Beltyukov photo by S.Beltyukov
photo by S.Beltyukov
Ready In:




  • Bring a large pot of heavily salted water to a boil over high heat.
  • Make the vegetable sauce(see recipe below) while waiting for water to boil.
  • When water has began to boil Add the pasta and cook until for about 5-10 minutes until Al dente( firm yet springy to the touch).
  • Strain and add butter; set aside until needed.
  • On a large skillet or large casserole dish place 1/3 of pasta and add the vegetable sauce and shredded cheese,then add another layer with pasta, sauce and cheese. Repeat until skillet or Casserole dish is full.
  • Put skillet or casserole dish in to the oven for 20 minutes 302 F (150C).
  • When done sprinkle Parmesan on top and serve with fresh chopped basil and fresh tomatoes.
  • Vegetable Sauce: slice carrots, onions, rutabagas or turnips, and potatoes into small pieces. In a large pot, add a tablespoon butter then add the vegetables. Sautee the vegetables until onions are translucent. Add 1 table spoon butter and flour and cook until a reux forms( blond colored paste) Add 1cup of chicken stock(add more as necessary) and a spoon of sugar. Cook until the vegetables become soft. Than puree it. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Audrie J.
    How can this be Tolstoy’s recipe (with chicken stock) when he firmly believed in no killing of animals?


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  1. MoltoMissy
    If you want to keep it meatless, skip the chicken stock. Mixed Vegetable Sauce (Modern Version) Ingredients: 4 medium carrots 1 turnip 3 russet potatoes 4 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons chopped parsley 2 tablespoons flour 6 cups water 1 tablespoons sugar Directions: 1. Roughly chop carrots, turnip, and potatoes. 2. In a large pot, melt the butter and add the chopped parsley. Add in the vegetables and sauté about 5 minutes. 3. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and sauté for another 5 minutes. 4. Pour in the water and sugar. Cover and simmer until the vegetables are soft. 5. Strain out the vegetables. Serve or keep in refrigerator for use in other recipes.



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