Noodles, Uncategorized

Mac and Cheese

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I have a serious problem with Mac and Cheese recipes. I’m always on the hunt for new pasta recipes in general. I do have a few pasta recipes I make on a normal basis, but I’m not sure what happens when I find a new one. It’s like the one I have isn’t enough. My hands get sweaty, my eyes light up, my heart beats faster and I just have to try the cheesy starchy yum-ness. Ok, that’s a total exaggeration.  Or is it!?!?!? 😛

Seriously now….

So…my husband has a serious issue. I’m talking about stuff now. About 6 months ago he ran into a deal where he was able to get two boats for free. He decided the boats weren’t fixable, but he wanted to keep the trailers because they are of value. He originally was going to make himself a trailer, but then he started getting offers he couldn’t pass up. One of the offers was a smoker. This guy he worked with a few years back makes these really cool smokers. I’m pretty excited to get it. I’ll be able to post a bunch of my smoker recipes. I haven’t been able to yet, because our smoker had broken. I really didn’t think I’d get another one, because we didn’t want to buy another one. Then suddenly this popped into our lap for a trade! YAY! We can’t wait! I like to make a bunch of stuff in the smoker and freeze it for later. It really makes it easy to have quick meals when you’re in need!

8 oz elbow macaroni

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

4 tablespoons butter

1/3 cup all purpose flour

3 cups milk

2 cups shredded cheese

1 cup shredded mozzarella

3.4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon mustard powder

 

In a pot bring water to a boil. Add noodles. Cook until al dente. Drain. add back to pot and add 1 tablespoon butter. In a saucepan melt butter. Add flour cook for one minute. Add milk. Stir. Once mixture becomes thickened add cheese and seasonings. Add pasta.

 

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Noodles, Uncategorized

Ham and Cheese Tortellini

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One of my most favorite things in this world is alfredo. I could sit and eat this all day every day. I actually found this particular recipe while surfing pinterest. I adore pinterest. This recipe came from a site called Yellow Bliss Road. I must tell you, I love this recipe. I’m not sure where they found it, but it’s truly heavenly. I changed a few things here and there, but overall the credit truly goes to them.

My boys ate the WHOLE PAN. I didn’t even try to stop them. I sat back and watched and it was like two wild, starving dogs fighting for the last scrap of food.  You’d hear grunts every once in a while, mmm, yum, rooorr roor roooooor. No just kidding, they weren’t acting all savage. They did enjoy it though

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 small onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 cups diced ham

1 20-ounce package fresh or frozen cheese tortellini

1 3/4 cups low-sodium chicken broth

1/2 cup heavy cream (since I added extra cheese, I did add more. 1/2- 1 cup)

1 1/2 cups fresh shredded Mozzarella cheese (I added a bit more)

1/4 cup fresh shredded Parmesan cheese (I used about 1/8 cup more)

Fresh chopped parsley

Heat olive oil in a large, oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring often, until softened. Add diced ham and garlic and cook for several minutes, until browned. Add chicken broth, tortellini and heavy cream. Stir until combined and bring to a boil. Cook for about 8-10 minutes or until most of the liquid is absorbed and tortellini are tender. Meanwhile, heat the broiler on your oven (place the rack in the center of your oven). Remove from heat. Stir in half of the Mozzarella and all of the Parmesan cheese until melted. Top with remaining Mozzarella and place under the pre-heated broiler for about 3-5 minutes, until golden and bubbly (watch closely to avoid burning). OR if you prefer not to use the broiler, cover and let sit for 5-7 minutes, or until cheese is melted. Garnish with fresh, chopped parsley and serve immediately.

Noodles, Uncategorized

Basil Broccoli Pasta

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I sat today and reflected on the last 11 years of my life. It’s hard to believe I was pregnant with a little bit twelve years ago. Today I sat and watching him leave elementary school. My years are flying by so quickly and I’m not able to blink. Every time I do, another year or five is gone. I’ve also forced myself to come to terms with things that I can’t control. This is something I have struggled with for my whole entire life. I’ve always liked things to feel manageable, controlled, rounded. Some of this is doable, but not everything. Isn’t it funny how it takes a long time to be able to come to terms with things? Accept things…

I’ve known that Coop has had issues with one of his classes this year. I really thought it was because he rushes and he’s bored easily. I thought it was silly mistakes. Turns out he really is struggling. All the other subjects he does great in. He makes fantastic grades.  I just couldn’t understand. I’m slowly getting that he really just needs the extra help. I’ve been working on lining up a tutor for him. Hopefully this will help next year. I hate that I have to pay for one, but I don’t want him to fall behind.

6 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons butter

4 cloves garlic, sliced

1 bunch broccoli florets

1 cup chicken broth

16 oz rigatoni pasta, cooked

1 teaspoon dried basil or 1 tablespoon fresh chopped basil

pepper to taste

grated parmesan

Cook Pasta according to directions on the package. Set aside. Heat oil and butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add garlic. Cook until lightly golden. Add broccoli. Increase heat. Cook and stir gently until broccoli is tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Add broth. Reduce heat and simmer until broccoli is tender. Add cooked pasta to skillet. Mix thoroughly to allow pasta to absorb flavor. Transfer to a serving dish, top with remaining ingredients.

Noodles, Uncategorized

Slow Cooked Mac and Cheese

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I’ve posted several recipes for mac and cheese, so clearly you know I love it! This is also one of the recipes from the Gooseberry Patch cookbooks that I currently am venturing through. My husband has a birthday soon. I decided to give this recipe a try so that I can maybe make this for him.

I don’t know why gift giving has to be so hard sometimes. For some reason I find it incredibly difficult to buy for my husband sometimes. He doesn’t really have a ton of interests. He has a few little interests, but he has all the stuff for those hobbies already. I’ve tried giving him other interests, but they don’t go over so great. At first he has huge plans to do it, but then he just looses interest. I guess it’s hard for me to understand that part of him. I’m one of these people give me a paint brush and I will do my best to paint the world. At least no matter what happens I can encourage him, love him, and walk with him just as he does me. I’m lucky like that…He’s a fantastic man and a fantastic father.

 

8 oz elbow noodles

2 eggs, beaten

12 oz can evaporated milk

1 1/2 cups milk

3 cups shredded cheese, cheddar

1/2 cup butter, melted

1 teaspoon salt

pepper to taste

Mix all together. Pour into a lightly greased crockpot. Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours.

Noodles, Uncategorized

Review: Sam’s Choice Four Cheese Risotto

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I was hesitant about trying it. So much so that I let it sit in the kitchen pantry for months. I was so iffy about it. Finally tonight I decided to try some different recipes.  When I went to find some kind of starch, this is the number one thing that caught my eye. Turns out, making this tonight turned out to be a great idea. It was SO good. The one thing I’m going to tell ya’ll is make sure that you leave some liquid. It’ll seem soupy, but it isn’t. Once it sits it’ll be perfect. I regret not trying it sooner. It’s seriously some of my favorite new starch. I could eat it all day. I like to add a little more parmesan cheese and it’s even better! I can’t even think of a negative thing about this dish. It’s that good ya’ll. Enjoy it!

Noodles, Uncategorized

Sausage and Chicken Cajun Alfredo

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Sometimes I just get in the mood for something different. Yesterday I had made some Cajun seasoning. I like to keep it on hand, because it’s just good in everything. I had found a recipe in a magazine a few years ago similar to this recipe. I just felt like it needed to be different, so I changed it to suit my own needs. I think the pasta tastes better being cooked directly in the liquid. I also find that adding the chicken makes it tastes better, but I think that what really makes it good is that homemade seasoning.

I encourage you guys to really try this recipe.  It’s so good. My boys had multiple bowls. Gotta love that!

4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

1 pound of chicken, cut into bite sized pieces

1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper to taste

14 oz smoked sausage, sliced on the diagonal

4 cups chicken broth

2 1/2 cups of heavy cream

1 pound of dried penne pasta

1 to 1 1/2 teaspoons of Cajun seasoning

6 oz of freshly shredded parmesan cheese

Dried Parsley, about 1 tablespoon

Cut chicken and sausage into bite size pieces. Sprinkle chicken with Cajun seasoning. Brown in olive oil. Add sausage and cook until lightly browned. Add chicken broth, heavy cream, pasta, and stir. Bring to boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook with the lid on until pasta is tender. Remove from heat and stir in parmesan cheese. Stir in parsley and additional Cajun seasoning if desired.

 

 

Noodles, Uncategorized

Mac and Cheese round 3

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I don’t know what the deal is, but these guys love mac and cheese. My other two recipes are my favorite, but this one is really simple and it tastes good too. Honestly the few ingredients it contains makes it even more easy to get together. That’s always my goal when cooking during the week, because the littles have school the next day. I save my elaborate recipes for weekends.

I was surfing through Facebook today. Which by the way guys, I made a page for my blog. I invite you guys to like the page. Anyway, many of our local news persons have their own Facebook pages. One of the people I know had posted to something someone else had posted on the news people’s page about electric bills being double and triple this month. I clicked on it, mostly just being nosey, but then I realized, wait my electric bill might end up being outrageous. It had already went up 50.00 from the month before, but it’s been super cold here. We haven’t had a winter so cold in a really long time. Then I thought, you know I’m getting ready to post to my blog about mac and cheese….what better way to live, if I have to be inside from the cold than to be snuggled up with some good ol’ mac and cheese??

8 oz noodles, like elbow noodles

4 strips of bacon, diced

2 tablespoons minced shallots

1 teaspoon munced garlic

2 tablespoons all purpose flour

2 1/2 cups whole milk

4 oz yellow cheddar cheese

4 oz of aerican cheese

salt and cayenne pepper to taste

Cook pasta per box directions. Drain pasta. Cook bacon in a sauce pan until crisp. Transfer to a papertowl lined plate. Drain all but 2 tablespoons of grease from pan. Cook shallots and garlic in drippings over medium heat until shallots are soft. Increase heat and whisk in flour and cook for one minute.  Whisk in milk and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until thickened 3-4 minutes. Reduce heat to low. Add cheeses. Whisk well until melted. Season sauce with salt and the pepper. Stir in pasta. Serve with bacon.

NOTE: I recommend starting with a pinch of cayenne. If it’s not enough for your taste then increase a little more. Be aware that as it simmers then it’ll get hotter.