Smoked Cheddar Mac ‘n’ Cheese and Oakland Stir Fry

January 14, 2010

Tonight, we had a few things in the fridge asking to be cooked. 

Smoked Cheddar Cheese, a good size block of it that we bought for slicing for sandwiches at the farmers market a week and a half ago.  But with no sandwich meat or bread in the pantry, we hadn’t made a whole lotta sandwiches.

Broccoli, who’s bright green color was waning in its second week in the crisper.

I suppose I could have done a great broccoli cheese something or other, but I had a craving for macaroni and cheese, so we had a two dish meal tonight.

I took on the mac-n-cheese, adapting this All Recipes.com recipe to my little ramekins.
http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Macaroni-and-Cheese-V/Detail.aspx

My recipe:

  • 1 tablespoons melted butter (Redwood Hill, Grand Lake Farmers Market)
  • 6 ounces whole wheat organic macaroni (from Lakeshore Produce, independent grocer)
  • 1/2 small onion, minced (Grand Lake Farmers Market)
  • 1 small tooth of garlic, minced (Grand Lake Farmers Market)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tiny dried pepper (we have Coban Chiles from our last trip to Guatemala)
  • 1 cup whole milk (organic, Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 table spoons Fromage Blanc (Grand Lake Famers Market, Cow Girl Creamery)
  • 1 egg (Funk Town Farm)
  • 1 cup shredded Smoked Cheddar Cheese (Redwood Hill, Grand Lake Farmers Market)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease 2 medium ramekins with butter.
  2. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add macaroni and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain, then place into prepared ramekins.
  3. While the pasta is cooking, melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the minced onion and cook until the onion softens and turns translucent, about 5 minutes.
  4. Stir in the pepper, salt, and crushed dried chili until incorporated, then turn off heat.
  5. Pour in the milk and whisk to incorporate the sautéed veggies and butter.
  6. Add the egg and whisk to blend all ingredients.  (It’s important to leave the heat off so as not to cook the egg)
  7.  Stir in the Cheddar cheese and pour cheese sauce over the macaroni in each dish.
  8. Place a dollop of Fromage Blanc on top of each dish.  It’ll melt down and brown, forming a nice salty “top” for the mac-n-cheese.  Buttered breadcrumbs would work, too.  
  9. Bake until the top is golden and bubbly, about 20 minutes.

 

Mr. Oakland Kitchen will have to share the secrets to juicy chicken and broccoli stir fry in another post, but here are the ingredients:
1 chicken breast, cut up (Kosher Meat Market, Lakeshore Ave.)
2 heads of broccoli, just the tops (put the stalks aside for vegetable stock later)
1 medium carrot, diced (Lake Merritt Farmers Market)
2 green onions, diced (Funk Town Farm)
2 small radishes, diced (Grand Lake Farmers Market)
a small handful of pine nuts (Trader Joes)
Soy Sauce
Sesame Sauce
Vegetable Oil

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