Thursday, October 13, 2011

Learning To Multitask With A Simple Macaroni And Cheese

I said it yesterday, I’m really busy these days… and aren’t we all? That’s why once in a while a good old frozen dinner comes in handy. But I ain’t no gal to accept supermarket frozen dinners. Nope. I have to say it, that’s just something I refuse to buy (no offense to those who do!). So once in a while I’ve got to make my own frozen stuff. I make it and then it’s there, cold as hell, waiting to be picked and warmed up to feed our family.

So what can you easily make and freeze? Sure, there’s the classic Sheppard’s pie, spaghetti sauce or even chili con carne. But another classic, which is always nice to have handy: macaroni and cheese. Try any version, it’s quite easy to make, and then freeze it… keep it for the good occasions; the days when you just don’t have the time to cook a good meal for your loved ones.

Make about 6 servings

1 shallot, finely diced
6 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
3 cups milk
2 cups of cheese mix (my choice: Emmenthal, Gruyère and parmesan)
1 cup of you favorite ham, in tiny dices
White pepper
2 cups baby spinach (optinal)
450g macaroni pasta
Chives (for decoration)

In a saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat. Add the shallot and garlic and cook for a minute or two.

Over low heat, add the flour and make a paste. Cook for a minute. Slowly add in the milk and make a béchamel sauce. Never stop mixing.

When the sauce is nice and thick, incorporate the ham and cheeses (keep about ½ cup on the side for later). Blend well. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cut the heat.

Cook your pasta very al dente in salt water. Add the pasta to the béchamel sauce and delicately blend. If you want to add vegetables to your dish, lay the baby spinach at the bottom of a baking pan. Pour the cheese noodles on top. Spread the leftover cheese on top.

When ready to serve, unfreeze (or cook right away) and cook in the oven for about 30 minutes at 450˚F or until the cheese is nice, golden and crispy.

Chop some chives and sprinkle on top of your serving plates.

1 comment:

  1. Yumm! I've been dreaming about macaroni and cheese for the past week so this post really caught my eye!