Friday, February 26, 2010

Stovetop Macaroni and Cheese

Adapted from Macaroni and Cheesecake

16 oz. Box of Elbow Macaroni
11/2 cup 1% Milk
3 tbsp all purpose flour
2 cups 2 % shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp salt
Fresh pepper, to taste
dash of cayenne or paprika (optional) 
Directions:Cook pasta according to package directions.Transfer to a colander.
Meanwhile in another saucepan, combine the milk and flour over medium heat, stirring with a whisk.
Cook, stirring constantly until thickened (about 2 minutes).
Add cheese, salt, and pepper, and continue whisking until all the cheese is melted.
Turn off heat, stir sauce into the pasta, and let sit for a few minutes before serving. Top with extra shredded cheddar and either heat in the oven for a few minutes til cheese is melted or in the microwave.

This was ok... Nothing like your good ole' Blue Box of Mac & Cheese, but it was tasty. My 2 year old loved it, and gobbled it up, I enjoyed it and it did satisfy my craving for pasta and cheese sauce. Would definitely be good for a holiday dinner as a traditional side dish. Overall I'd give it 3 stars.

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Chicken Bacon Ranch Pizza

Adapted From Annie's Eats
This dough recipe is for a bread machine. If you don't have one you can use a stand mixer, or just use your favorite refrigerated pizza dough.

Dough: (This recipe makes one 16 inch Pizza)
1 cup water
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 teaspoons garlic powder

¼ cup Ranch dressing
1 1/2 cups shredded Cheddar
½-1 grilled chicken breast, chopped into bite-sized pieces (I used pre-cooked chicken strips)
1 tomato, seeded and diced
2-3 green onions, chopped
3 Slices Turkey Bacon, cooked

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Gently roll out the pizza dough into a large circle, leaving a thicker ring around the edge for the crust, if using a pizza stone heat the stone in the oven while preparing.  Spread the Ranch dressing in a thin layer evenly over the unbaked crust.  Sprinkle with half the cheddar.  Top with grilled chicken, tomato, green onions and bacon.  Sprinkle with remaining shredded cheddar.  Once assembled, carefully transfer the pizza to the preheated baking stone and return to the oven.  Bake for 11-14 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and browned.  Slice, serve, and enjoy!

I really enjoyed this pizza, however it was not a big hit with my husband or son. If you like ranch on your pizza this is very tasty. Overall I'd give this 3 stars, though I probably won't be making it again.

*Pizza Dough adapted from Bread Machine Magic

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