Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Macaroni and Cheese

Passover is rapidly approaching and I find that my cupboards are still brimming with chametz, the various grain products that Jews are prohibited from eating or possessing during the eight day holiday. Forbidden foods include oats, barley, corn, and the vast number of wheat related products that we rely so heavily on: bread, pasta, tortillas, crackers, and so on. While I rather enjoy having a week that's so very distinct from the rest of the year, getting ready is rather tiresome.

A dish of delicious homemade macaroni and cheese could serve two purposes: using up pasta and reviving my spirit for there's little in this world I love more than a good homemade macaroni and cheese. It's taken me years to settle on just the right formula. Many pounds of perfectly good cheese have been wasted in the search for the perfect mac. I settled on Jack Bishop's recipe (with a few alterations) sometime last year and haven't looked back. His preference is for more bread crumbs and I prefer somewhat fewer and with a garlicky kick. He's adamant about specific cheeeses and I am far more flexible with good old Tillamook cheddar often providing the bulk of the cheesy goodness. My take on Mr Bishop's fine recipe is here.

The pickiest of The Picky Ones won't touch homemade macaroni and cheese with a ten foot pole. Announcing my dinner plans, he began to work himself up into a frenzy of indignant kvetching about how I never make anything he can eat. I regularly offer to teach him to make anything he thinks he could choke down but his general response to that is a rather loud refusal. Oddly enough he decided he'd try this time so while I made our macaroni and cheese, he made a simple red sauce and we were able to use up two pounds of pasta in one meal. The yummy macaroni was served with leftovers of what we now refer to as Orangette carrot salad followed by slices of leftover orange cake. All in all, a perfect little meal.

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