Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sinful Mac'n'Cheese

Hooo-boy was this good! Nate protested me making it, saying that mac'n'cheese is not a meal unto itself, but I would happily eat this for several dinners in a row. The recipe uses three different kinds of cheese, and some pretty fattening dairy products but is definitely worth it. But Nate might be right...serve some kind of vegetable with it, okay?

Sinful Mac'n'Cheese

1.25 c. elbow or other short noodle
2.5 oz. cheddar cheese, cubed
1 tbsp. + .5 tsp. flour
3/4 tsp. salt
3/4 tsp. dry mustard
pinch ground pepper
pinch cayenne pepper
pinch nutmeg
1/3 c. sour cream
1 egg, lightly beaten
3 tbsp. yellow onion, shredded
3/4 c. heavy cream
3/4 c. half'n'half
2 shakes Worcestshire sauce
1/2 c. cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 c. mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/4 c. parmesan cheese

1. Preheat oven to 350. Bring large pot of water to boil. Sprinkle with salt. Add noodles and cook al dente according to instructions.

2. Grease 8x8" baking dish. Drain noodles and pour them into dish. Sprinkle with cubed cheddar cheese and mix gently. Set aside.

3. Combine flour, salt, mustard, peppers and nutmeg into bowl. Add sour cream and egg. Wish in onion, half'n'half, cream and Worcestshire.

4. Pour over macaroni. Combine shredded cheese and cover macaroni. Sprinkle parmesan on top.

5. Bake until set around edges but still saucy in the middle, about 30 minutes. Let cool at least 10 minutes.

Orange Chicken and Rice

I will admit, this dish turned out to be something totally different than what I was expecting. The title and ingredients made me think this would be a lighter version of the kind of orange chicken you get from a Chinese takeout. It actually turned out to be a mildly-orange flavoured curry. Not at all Nate's kind of thing, but I found it enjoyable.

Orange Chicken and Rice

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken pieces
2 tbsp. oil
1 med. onion, coarsley chopped
14.5 oz chicken broth
1.5 c. orange juice
1-3 tsp. curry
2 cloves garlic
dash of cinnamon
3 tbsp. raisins
1/2 c. frozen peas
1/2 c. rice, white or brown

1. Saute chicken and onion in oil until brown. Add broth, orange juice and seasonings. Cover and simmer 45 mins.

2. Add raisins, peas and rice to pot, lower the heat and cover.

3. Cook until rice is done, ~25 mins. Add water and broth if necessary.

Beef Stew with Noodles

This was a nice, hearty meal that would be lovely to come home to on a cold fall day. I really enjoyed this, but Nate felt like it tasted like chicken soup with beef awkwardly added in. I'll leave it up to you to decide.

Beef Stew with Noodles

1 tbsp. oil
2 lbs. boneless beef chuck, cut into 1/2" cubes
1 med. onion, sliced lengthwise
2 tbsp. flour
3 cans (14.5 oz each) chicken broth
1/2 lb. carrots, peeled and cut into 1" cubes
2 med. russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1" cubes
2 c. egg noodles
3 tbsp. finely chopped parsley
1 tsp. red wine vinegar

1. Heat oil in dutch oven over high. Add beef, season with salt and pepper and cook until seared and browned, ~6 mins.

2. Add onion and season with salt and pepper. Cook until onion is softened, ~5 mins.

3. Stir in flour until beef and onion are coated and cook another minute. Add broth and 3 cups water, stirring and scraping up browned bits. Bring to boil, reduce to simmer and cook until beef is tender, ~25 mins. Add carrots and potatoes and cook until potatoes are tender, ~10 mins.

4. Add noodles, cook ~8 mins. Season with salt and pepper, stir in parsley and vinegar.

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