Last Saturday it was raining and I needed to run errands, so everybody hopped in the car and helped out. Ace Hardware for fertilizer [it's time to winterize, weed, and fungicide friends], Kohl’s for C’s bath mats, Sonic for Cherry Limeades and cheese sticks, exploring model homes in a new master planned community [design ideas, y'all], Michael’s for Halloween/fall crafts and FINALLY Best Buy to purchase the Lion King on Blu-ray.
[After returning home]
C: I have so many things to do tonight, four things.
A: Oh yea? You’re a busy lady. What are you going to do?
C: I have to make my house and then eat dinner, make cake balls and the we’re going to watch the Lion King.
A: Wow! What’s for dinner? [We both already knew it was going to be my yummy mac and cheese because my recipe was sitting on the counter Friday after school.]
C: I love Mac and Cheese.
A: I know you do, that’s why I make it all the time.
C: I think everybody should be given your recipe for mac and cheese when they are born… like, along with their birth certificate. It is delicious and everybody should have the recipe because it makes them feel good.
A: Thanks babe!
Here’s the recipe [I am not sure where I got it from about a year ago, so if it is yours, let me know!]
“C Approved” Mac and Cheese [Serves 8-12]
Bread Crumb Topping:
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
¾ cup panko bread crumbs
1 tsp. dried parsley
Salt and pepper
Pasta and Cheese Sauce:
1 lb. pasta shapes
6 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. dry mustard
¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
6 tbsp. all-purpose flour
2¼ cups low-sodium chicken broth
3½ cups milk
1 lb. Colby jack cheese, shredded
8 oz. extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
Ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400˚ F.
- Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the pasta to the water and cook just until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Drain the pasta and leave in the colander.
- Bread crumb topping - Melt the butter in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add in the panko and cook, stirring frequently, until the bread crumbs are a light golden brown. Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley. Set aside to cool.
- Return the empty pasta pot to medium-high heat and melt the butter. Stir in the garlic, dry mustard, and cayenne, cooking just until fragrant, about one minute. Whisk in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, until golden, about 1 minute. Whisk in the chicken broth and milk and continue to heat, stirring frequently, until the mixture bubbles and thickens slightly, about 5-7 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheeses, whisking until completely melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stir the drained pasta into the cheese sauce.
- Pour the pasta and cheese mixture into a 9 x 13″ baking dish [or two 9" square baking dishes if serving 4, you can freeze/save the other dish for later]. Sprinkle with the bread crumb topping. Bake 30 minutes, until the sauce is bubbling and the bread crumbs are golden brown.
We like to enhance our Mac experience with crescent rolls to sop up the remaining cheese sauce… if there is any
P.S. Here is the house C built. Isn’t it magnificent?
P.S.S. We love the Lion King right now, I am a big fan of Rafiki because he wacks Simba on the head and said “Who cares? It’s in the past!”
P.S.S.S. There are A LOT more ”likes” in this conversation, I spared you, you’re welcome.