Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Our families favorite dinner - gets gobbled right up!

MAC & CHEESE, BROCCOLI & FRUIT SALAD: This takes about 30 minutes!
While pasta water is boiling, start fruit salad (see *).
Cook 1 lb. of your favorite pasta in a large pot(we like bow tie) don't forget to salt the water when you add the pasta. While it cooks make the white sauce (or roux)
In a small sauce pan (with tall sides) melt 4 TB butter over medium heat, or just a tad warmer. Then whisk in 4 TB flour until it's smooth. Slowly, while whisking add 2 cups milk (we use 1%). Continue to check on it and give it a stir while you prepare the rest of the meal, it will start to thicken up, when it's just barely thickened, turn heat to low. Grate about 2 cups, give or take of your favorite cheese (we use mild cheddar and sometimes a combo of that with mozzarella too), set aside.
*Prepare the fruit salad by draining off two cans of peaches (and chop into bite sizes if needed) and save about 1/2 cup of the juice. Add peaches to a bowl along with one large can drained mandarin oranges. Use 1/4 package of a small package of vanilla pudding and whisk in the peach juice. Stir into the fruit and let sit in the fridge until serving time, then add one banana sliced and toss in.
Steam a bunch of broccoli in the microwave by cutting into bite sized pieces, add a few TB of water, cover and cook checking every few minutes and giving it a stir, total time is about 7-9 minutes.
When the pasta is done drain it off and put it back into the pot. Stir in the white sauce,toss in the cheese and stir until all the pasta has cheese on it, then cover with the lid.
While you grab all you need to dish up, the cheese will melt up and be ready to serve. I usually bake mine in a casserole dish, but discovered if you let it sit in the pot for a few minutes it's just the same as if you bake it essentially except for a golden crust on the top, but time is too precious!
We have what we call "Dinner Captain" where a kid gets to choose the meal and help prepare it and my 5 year old boy ALWAYS chooses Mac & Cheese.

5 comments:

Cynthia said...

Opps, I left out to also add 1/4 tsp salt and a dash of pepper to the roux after you add the milk.

Kammy said...

This sounds like the perfect meal for my family. Everyone will love it.

Kammy said...

I made this last night for our family and it was delicious! I used sharp cheddar and Monterrey jack, yum. I also 1 1/2 times the fruit, and we ate the rest for breakfast! Thanks.

Cynthia said...

Glad to know a few of you have found success in this dinner. Kim said the mac & cheese turned out well for their family. Yeah!

debbie said...

Thanks!! My kids love mac and cheese and I think this one will be a keeper for our family. I am always looking for something new that will please everyone.