Ode to Kraft Mac and Cheese
I love Kraft Mac and Cheese (the powder cheese variety). When I say love, I mean I could eat it more than once a week and not get sick of it, I get offended when others say unkind things about it, and I don't really like how anyone else makes it (they ruin it). I ate it so much as a child that my mom still avoids it like the plague.
I don't waste my time with the shells and cheese or frozen dinners. They all lack that certain taste and color and texture that only the cardboard box and packet of orange powder can give you.
I am not going to lie and say that this is a processed food that will eventually be extinct in my diet. It just isn't going to happen, but I have been trying to find that definitive homemade recipe to use in its place a bit more often. The catch is that it has to be quick like my 10 minute box of comfort. So I tried a recipe this week. I had actually had it once before when my fiance made it for me. I thought it was pretty good the first time, so why not give it another whirl. Well, they say that you should marry someone who can do the things you can not do, my fiance can make a mean cheese sauce. Mine turns out lumpy, grainy and just plain gross. So unless my fiance wants to make this recipe for me on a regular basis, I have to keep working at it. Still, nothing compares to my one true blue box love. Back to the cookbooks.Stove-Top Macaroni and Cheese with Roasted TomatoesIn Step 4, the macaroni mixture is cooked over medium-low heat so the cheese won't become stringy and the sauce, grainy.
3 cups halved cherry tomatoes
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
3 ounces sourdough bread, torn into pieces
1 teaspoon butter, melted
12 ounces large elbow macaroni
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded extrasharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup egg substitute
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated low-fat milk
Preheat oven to 375°.
Place tomatoes in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle with black pepper. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally.
While tomatoes cook, place bread in a food processor; pulse 2 times or until crumbly. Toss crumbs with melted butter. Sprinkle the crumbs on a baking sheet, and bake at 375° for 12 minutes or until golden, stirring frequently.
Cook macaroni in boiling water 7 minutes; drain. Return macaroni to pan; place over medium-low heat. Add cheese and remaining ingredients; cook 4 minutes or until cheese melts, stirring constantly. Stir in tomatoes. Sprinkle each serving with about 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs.
Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 cup)
CALORIES 357(29% from fat); FAT 11.4g (sat 6.6g,mono 3.1g,poly 0.8g); PROTEIN 18.1g; CHOLESTEROL 33mg; CALCIUM 350mg; SODIUM 669mg; FIBER 2g; IRON 2.7mg; CARBOHYDRATE 45.2g
Cooking Light, JANUARY 2005