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The No-Wheat Cookbook: Tuna Noodle Casserole

NoWheat

With the family falling into a mostly-gluten-free way of life, so that Alistaire can eat with us, I picked a recipe we might all enjoy from The No-Wheat Cookbook: Easy, Delicious Recipes for a Wheat-Free Diet. I hate sounding like I am getting on the bandwagon for no-wheat…but honestly, I have to say my stomach has felt better as I move us off wheat pasta (and all other forms of it….). We are eating less pasta, be it GF or not, and my stomach doesn’t feel like a lead balloon and I might add, this week we got home late, and I made a fresh tomato sauce tossed with wheat spaghetti….it was delicious and my gut hurt after it. Lesson learned. Once you wean off, you notice things. Which is a huge bummer, because as Kirk can attest, I reeeaaalllllyyyyyy love pasta. Maybe Alistaire’s allergies are a blessing? Kirk would say yes ūüėČ It is the pasta that does me in, not bread. Sheesh!

I grew up on casseroles, as I have mentioned before. Many involved cans of cream of mushroom soup and a lot of pasta. Our casseroles were heavy on carbs, low on protein (pasta is cheap, tuna not so much). I reversed that formula and Kirk loved it. One of our realties with a plant-based diet and a child with allergies is fish/meat has had to come back into our diet, so that he can get what he needs. I am OK with using a little here and there, if it is ethically sourced. Between Wild Planet tuna and making it gluten/dairy free with Go Veggie cheeze, we had a great casserole. All it was missing was a bag of crushed potato chips on top ūüėČ

PS: Here is an option though – it would have been great with a can of drained garbanzo beans as well, instead of the tuna.

TN

Tuna Noodle Casserole (as adapted from page 166)

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces brown rice noodles (used twists)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1¬Ĺ cups milk (used unsweetened So Delicious)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • ¬Ĺ tsp dried majoram
  • 3 Tbsp cornstarch
  • ¬Ĺ tsp fine sea salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 2 (5 ounce) cans albacore tuna, drained and flaked (see above for a veg option)
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese (used Go Veggie, Dayia would work for a full veg option)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375¬į, lightly oil or spray a 9×13″ baking dish.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boil, cook pasta as directed, drain when just al dente (I took a minute off the cooking time).

Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-low, add in oil, onion, carrots, red pepper and garlic, cook for 5 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high, and continue to cook for 5 minutes more. Take off heat, stir in tuna.

In a medium saucepan, whisk the milk, broth, marjoram, and cornstarch until smooth. Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until thickened. Season with salt and pepper/ Take off heat and stir in cheese.

Add cooked pasta to skillet, toss with vegetable mix, add in sauce and stir to coat. Transfer to baking dish. Bake for 25 minutes. If desired, top with¬†¬ľ cup more cheese, and serve.

Serves 6.

~Sarah

FTC Disclaimer: We received a review copy.

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Sesame Noodles

It is¬†Wednesday¬†already? Eek! I am finally catching up from the weekend. My In-Laws are on the road, off on vacation, the house is getting back to order. Kirk and I took the boys hiking on Sunday to one of my favorite places, Sunrise, at Mt. Rainier National Park. Still plenty of snow and we had nice weather, sunny and maybe 70¬į. I posted many more photos on my other blog.¬†Walker loves snow (and what kid doesn’t in July?) and hey, Alistaire loves being carried ūüėČ

R11

In the quest to make dinners Alistaire can eat with us (with his allergies), I am working on the sauces first, then I will adapt the pasta, as we use up our wheat pasta stock before we go to gluten-free. I can always drizzle sauces over quinoa or rice for now, for him. Thankfully we are down to maybe 8 or so boxes left of spaghetti.

SesameNoodles

Sesame Noodles

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup Sunbutter
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp red pepper rice vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp lower sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp dry ginger
  • 1 tsp chili pepper sauce (Sriracha or Tabasco or similar)
  • 2 Tbsp sesame oil, divided
  • 2 Tbsp sesame seeds
  • 16 ounces spaghetti noodles

Directions:

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil, cook pasta as directed. Reserve 1 cup cooking water before draining.

Meanwhile, add all of sauce ingredients to a high-speed blender, reserving 1 Tablespoon of sesame oil for later use. Process sauce until smooth.

Toss drained noodles with remaining 1 Tablespoon sesame oil in a large bowl.

Add in the cup of reserved pasta water to blender, process until smooth.Pour sauce over pasta, toss to coat. Sprinkle sesame seeds over, toss again.

Serves 4 to 6.

~Sarah

Farmer’s Market Tomatoes & Pasta

T1

There is something about mixed heirloom tomatoes that about has me swooning when I see them! Purple, brandy, yellow, orange, pale ghost, striped, green….why do we limit¬†ourselves¬†to pedestrian red? I wish I could say these were off my tomato vines, but not yet, it is still much too early here in Western Washington. Soon though!

Toamtoes

 

My tomato plants have really filled in under my kitchen! I have baby ones even coming on.

T2

Fresh tomatoes, garlic, basil and pasta: a rustic dinner for a laid back evening….

Tomatoes & Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb pasta, medium size shape
  • 2 pounds heirloom tomatoes
  • ¬Ĺ cup fresh basil leaves, packed
  • ¬ľ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3¬†garlic¬†cloves, minced
  • ¬Ĺ tsp fine sea salt
  • ¬Ĺ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ¬Ĺ tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large sweet onion, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup freshly grated pecirino-romano cheese

Directions:

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boil, cook pasta as directed.

Meanwhile, wash the tomatoes and halve. Squeeze the juice and seeds gently into a large mixing bowl, setting tomatoes aside. Chop the basil and stir into tomato juice the extra virgin olive oil, garlic, salt, red pepper flakes and black pepper. Chop tomatoes and mix in, setting aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high, add in remaining olive oil and onion, sauté until tender and turning golden. Reduce heat to low, add in tomato mixture. Cover and let cook for 5 minutes.

Drain pasta, add to sauce and stir to coat, adding cheese slowly.

Serves 4 to 6.

~Sarah

The Priciest Vegan Mac n’ Cheeze

Delicious, creamy vegan mac n’ cheeze. I was in carb-heaven on Thursday, we were all enjoying a laid back dinner. There were a new flavor of popsicle in the freezer, the backyard was calling us. First though, we needed to enjoy our dinner….

Mac3

And so why was it the priciest mac n’ cheeze? It sent Alistaire to the ER for a severe allergic reaction. Oy. Nothing like a $100 co-pay, twice in under 2 months time (and a new allergy as well). I had to laugh that it was my home-cooking that did it. Yep, trying to put a tasty plant-based meal on the table and it winds up with us¬†spending¬†half the evening in a hospital room with a $100 bill. And all those luscious leftovers went into¬†the¬†garbage ūüė¶ Sigh. For $100 we could have eaten out 3 times at the local greasy diner and he could have eaten all the tater tots he desired, since they are fried in canola oil. Sheesh.

Mac1

While eating dinner, Kirk looked up at Alistaire. His face didn’t look right. He was turning red, his face was swelling up and turning into welts and hives. The picture above was about 30 minutes after we arrived in the ER, and about 45 minutes after he had his meds. He looked SO much better in the ER than he did at home. While trying to get his Benadryl into him he was getting a lot worse, very fast. But we did what we needed to do, even if both of us were shaking badly. I know I can use an Epi-Pen now and that we made good decisions. He looked awful, though as soon as we got the meds into him he didn’t seem to be getting any worse, so they were working fast. It is really amazing how fast Epi-Pens work.

An hour after that photo he was feeling great, and looked SO much better. He was given a¬†steroid¬†shot as well. The Epi-Pen had him bright-eyed and wide awake and having a grand time…..we finally got released when he was showing minimal new hives (they kept coming on for hours, just smaller and less painful). Very, very grateful for having the ER 3 miles away from our house.

Mac2

So…we have an appointment to see an allergist in a few weeks. It will be a multi-hour visit and I hope we get more answers. Like exactly what he is allergic to, besides peanuts, cashews and eggs. Whatever it takes to keep him healthy I will do!

Kirk and I got talking and realized one big issue we had, was while we had the meds, they were not easily grabbed for at home use. Since we had doubles, I made up a to-go kit for him, that stays on the shelf between the kitchen and living room.

Epi

Tucked into a clear locking box is his second set of Epi-Pens, a bottle of¬†liquid¬†antihistamine, syringe dosers, disposable gloves (if anyones hands are dirty/contaminated) and a printed out form that lists what to do – how much, when and how to do injections, along with who to call. I am going to hedge that it is hard for every Mom of an allergy child to let them out of their sight ūüė¶ Not sure when I’ll be OK with a baby sitter, even at the gym I get keyed up when they are playing while I work out.

Friday evening, 24 hours later, he was feeling great and out playing in the yard. Gotta love how resilient little one are!

B

But….lest we forget about the dinner, here is my vegan mac n’ cheeze. Good thing I enjoyed it, cause I won’t get it again! I am hoping after the allergy testing that I can try it¬†with sunflower seeds!

Mac4

Vegan Mac n’ Cheeze

Ingredients:

  • 16 ounces elbow macaroni

Cheeze Sauce –

  • 1¬Ĺ cups raw cashews
  • 1¬ĺ cups unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/3 cup¬†nutritional¬†yeast flakes
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large lemon, juiced (2-3 Tbsp)
  • 1 Tbsp white miso
  • 1 large clove garlic, peeled
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • ¬Ĺ tsp chili powder
  • Pinch ground turmeric
  • 4 dashes hot sauce, or to taste (used Tabasco)

Topping –

  • 2 slices whole wheat or whole grain bread
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch fine sea salt
  • Pinch ground black pepper

Directions:

Soak cashews for at least 4 hours or overnight in filtered water, drain and rinse.

Preheat oven to 350¬į, lightly oil a 9×13″ baking dish.

Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to boil, cook pasta as directed on package, undercooked by a minute. Drain and shake dry, return to cooking pot.

Meanwhile, combine the cheeze sauce ingredients in a high-speed blender. Process until smooth. Stir sauce into pasta, then spread in prepared baking dish.

Toast the bread and pulse in a mini food chopper until finely crumbed. Toss in a bowl with the olive oil, salt and pepper. Sprinkle crumbs over the top of the mac.

Bake for about 25 minutes, until golden.

Serves 6 to 8.

~Sarah

A Twist on Alfredo Pasta

What is smooth and creamy, yet isn’t what it seems? This alfredo sauce! Not only is it simple to make, it is gluten-free and has no heavy cream (and no thickeners either!) And how? Well..let’s talk cauliflower. Yeah, the big white vegetable with little flavor of its own. I think of it as the tofu of¬†the¬†vegetable world. When presented right, it is delicious. It just needs a little helping hand to get there from blandville.

Alfredo

Roasted Pepper and Mushroom Alfredo Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp olive or coconut oil
  • 1 large sweet onion,¬†peeled¬†and chopped
  • 4 large cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 large head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cored and broken into florets
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • Ground black pepper
  • Fine Sea Salt
  • 1 Tbsp olive or coconut oil
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 jar or package roasted red peppers, drained, seeded and roughly chopped (used 13 ounce pkg)
  • Penne pasta (13.25 to 16 ounces, whole wheat, multi-grain, gluten-free, etc)
  • Finely grated Parmesan cheese or vegan-Parm substitute, if desired

Directions:

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta as directed, drain.

Meanwhile, heat a tall saucepan (a 4 quart or so) over medium heat, add oil, onion and garlic, sauté till tender, stirring often.

Add in broth and cauliflower, bring to boil over high. Put on lid, lower heat to medium-low and let simmer until fork tender, about 8 minutes.

Take off heat and carefully transfer to a high-speed blender (such as a Vitamix). Cover the top with a kitchen towel, process till smooth.

Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high, add in second oil and mushrooms, Sprinkle a little salt and pepper on top, stirring until turning golden. Reduce heat to medium, add in roasted red pepper and heat through. Stir in cauliflower sauce, add plenty of black pepper and if desired, a nice helping of Parmesan cheese, stirring to melt. If not using cheese you will need more salt.

Toss with hot pasta and let bubble in sauce for a minute or two to thicken.

Serves 4.

Note:

Nutritional yeast can be used for the cheese, for those who like it. Add to taste.

~Sarah

Musings on the Art of Writing Recipes & Caesar Pasta Salad

As I was writing this post I opened an email from Foodista (They are behind IFBC), with the released results from their State of Food Blogging 2013 survey. Coming from 679 bloggers that completed a 32 question survey online. And the final section grabbed my attention:

Part VII: Food Blogger Conferences

There have been 18 food blogger conferences created in North America alone since the International Food Blogger Conference (IFBC) started in 2009, although not all are still in existence. Surprisingly, 70% of respondents have still never attended a conference; this is hearteningly down from 82% last year. When asked what is most important in determining whether a blogger would attend a conference, the most important factors were cost, the quality of the schedule and speakers, and scheduling.

Also of interest is that bloggers who attend food blogger conferences have a greater impact than those who don’t:

‚ÄĘ Sites seen by 10X more unique website visitors per month

‚ÄĘ 93% more likely to be making money from their blog

‚ÄĘ 172% more likely to have been blogging for over four years

‚ÄĘ Engaged with 704% more fans on Pinterest, 668% more on Google +, 281% more on Facebook, and 155% more people on Twitter

This is important reading and when the survey is released tomorrow I’ll post a link. What it shows is¬†my¬†attending¬†conferences¬†is worth it. Not just for mental health and getting inspired, but that I get my voice out there and view my¬†world¬†differently after.¬†Conferences¬†can seem expensive, which is true. You can’t get around travel, fees and hotels easily. The knowledge learned, for me at least, makes the cost worth it. I look at it as “professional¬†education”! If I can encourage my husband to keep up with his for his work, well, maybe I should as well.

Panel

Musings on the Art of Writing Recipes? Yes! This was a class I attended on Friday afternoon at Vida Vega Con II. It was a panel featuring Terry Hope Romero, Dreena Burton, Nava Atlas and moderated by the charming Grant Butler. This class wasn’t one I had¬†originally¬†planned on going to, but decided to give it a listen. Classes like this confirm why I write down the meals I make for my family. It is as Terry put it, a “festival¬†of freedom” to blog. You can say what you want, when you want. It is OK if no one listens but that¬†success (to me)¬†is finding that others have made my recipes and loved them. I love how many readers I consider “online” friends, that I have met through my blog. Blogging can be hard, conferences¬†will¬†rejuvenate¬†you like nothing else.

The ladies talked about why they blog and ways to be better at it ourselves. Tips I scratched down and thought about how I use many of them in my way already –

  • Who is your audience? Write for them as much as for yourself. Let your readers get to know you, not just a recipe. Be personal!
  • Find what you want to be, and follow it, But don’t style yourself after whoever is popular/you huff after. Just be yourself! Readers see through fakeness.
  • Write about your failures. Don’t be¬†embarrassed! I am on first name basis with my compost bin out back and yeah, not everything I create is edible. And I don’t deny it.
  • When you hit a block and have no ideas, go out of your comfort zone for inspiration. I read lots of main stream books and¬†magazines¬†and often veganize recipes – just because I can and it is fun to do!
  • As you create a recipe, keep writing down whatever you do. Otherwise you will forget something when you go to blog it. I keep lots of scratch paper in my kitchen by the stove,¬†with¬†a pen, just for this.
  • Never assume your readers will¬†know¬†what you are talking about. Odd ingredients? Post a link or explain it, tell why you use¬†certain¬†brands. Don’t just list “bake in a loaf pan”. Give an exact size as often as you can. Go into writing knowing many readers are just dabbling and not full-blown foodies.

Tips on the actual writing of recipes:

  • If there is an idiot out there, they will find your blog. Plan in advance for them. That means? Write clearly and double-check your¬†ingredients¬†and¬†directions¬†before publishing. If it fails for them, they will blame you!
  • Be¬†consistent¬†in your writing style. They brought up how writing cookbooks¬†changed¬†them – if you like the term “skillet” or “saut√© pan”, use it all the¬†time¬†and not “frypan” in one line, then “skillet” in line three. As well, keep your recipe directions consistent from recipe to recipe.
  • Define the ingredients from the¬†directions. Bullet points show it well.
  • Be¬†consistent¬†in your measurements. If you use cup and tsp/Tbsp, stick to it. Yes, we know¬†¬Ĺ the¬†world weighs flour and it is more accurate, but you can get novice readers confused if you go back and forth between styles of measuring. OK, and yeah, I get hate mail from British readers here and there telling me I should use a scale and use the metric system, but no, I usually don’t weigh. Because the majority of my readers are from the US. And I refuse to use the metric¬†system¬† anyways. I was promised it was coming 30+ years ago, and so were personal flying cars. So until I get my car, no dice. ūüėČ
  • Avoid random measurements. Example given? 6 Tbsp when one could give¬†¬ľ cup + 2 Tbsp. Or 7/8th cup. Make it easier on your readers. Otherwise the village idiot might find you. And clog up your email and comment forms with hate mail….
  • Have your ingredients listed in order of being used. Common sense? Not really. Lots of bloggers oddly enough do things out-of-order.

There was a lot more…of which I am digesting and pondering. It was neat to listen to the differences in how the three of them view writing. Their methods and style range all over, influenced by their age and life experiences. There are many ways to blog, you just need to find what makes you happy.

So after all that, here is my recent dinner that soothed me after traveling. Vibrant and full of summer love in a bowl –

CP

This pasta salad comes together quickly and is a carb lovers dream. That’d be me. The recipe is vegetarian friendly but could be made vegan by swapping in Faux-Parmesan cheese. I used vegan mayo though to avoid eggs, so that the wee one could have some as well (one of his allergies is eggs). As I said too many other attendees: I am not vegan, I follow a plant-based diet and work around food allergies. Somedays a block of aged Italian cheese that has only a few simple ingredients calls to me.¬†Pecorino Romano is a sheep’s milk cheese, salty and delicious.

Caesar Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound bow tie (farfalle) pasta
  • 1-2 lemons
  • ¬ľ cup grated Pecorino Romano or¬†Parmesan cheese + more for garnish
  • ¬ľ cup packed fresh basil leaves, finely chopped + more for garnish
  • 3 Tbsp vegan¬†mayonnaise (or regular)
  • 3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large cloves¬†garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • ¬Ĺ tsp fine sea salt, or to taste
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes (9-11 ounces), halved
  • 1 medium¬†zucchini, grated
  • 1 cup unsalted frozen¬†peas, thawed

Directions:

Bring a large pot of lightly slated water to boil, cook bow-ties as directed, drain.

Meanwhile, finely zest the lemon using a microplaner,¬†juice¬†the lemon to get¬†¬ľ cup (if your lemon is small or on the dry side you may need a second one). Add it to a large mixing bowl, whisk in the cheese, basil leaves, mayo, oil, garlic, pepper and salt.

Add the cooked pasta, tomatoes, zucchini and peas, toss to coat. Serve warm or refrigerate covered until cold, holds up well to being made a day in advance.

Serves….a crowd!

~Sarah

Simplicity: One Skillet Pasta

I was inspired by a recipe in the most recent issue of Martha Stewart Living, on page 154 (gorgeous full-page photo on page 100 I might add). The concept was a duh moment. Cook everything, in one skillet. No draining. Dinner is ready in 15 minutes. Funny is, I have cooked pasta in a similar fashion, when hiking. It never occurred to me to do this at home.

The pasta itself is customizable. I mostly followed the recipe, but one could add whatever vegetables they craved. I swapped in multi-grain pasta, used half the salt and adjusted¬†the¬†water due to using a bit more pasta than called for. And…one coudl easily use broth instead of water, minus the salt, for an even better option.

Onepot1

A bonus? Image having this on a summer evening, made with just picked tomatoes and basil….

Onepot2

One Skillet Pasta

Ingredients:

  • 13.25 ounce package multi-grain¬†linguine¬†pasta (or 12 ounces white pasta)
  • 10 to 12 ounces cherry or grape tomatoes, quartered or halved, depending on size
  • 1 sweet onion, peeled and¬†sliced¬†thinly
  • 4 large cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ¬Ĺ tsp red pepper flakes (use¬†¬ľ tsp if you don’t like it really spicy)
  • 2 large sprigs basil, leaves picked off, stems discarded +¬†extra¬†leaves for topping
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • ¬ľ tsp ground black pepper
  • 5 cups water

Directions:

Break linguine in half, place in a large/deep skillet. Add remaining ingredients on top, bring to a boil over high heat. Cook for about 9 minutes, stirring and tossing the pasta with tongs often, until most of the water has evaporated, and the pasta is al dente.

Serve topped with more basil leaves torn and a drizzle more olive oil, if desired. If desired toss with a little faux-Parmesan or sesame seeds.

Vegetarian option:

Finely grate a small pile of pecorino romano or Parmesan cheese, toss with the pasta after taking off the heat, and a bit more to top with before eating.

Serves 4.

~Sarah

Comfort Food Done My Way – Mac n’ Cheese

Last week Kirk was gone on another business trip which left me with 3 kids, stuck at home during a miserable heat wave (which was pretty odd for our area). I was feeling pretty far down. And tired. Alistaire has 8 teeth coming in, all at once, which yeah, has made for a “joyful” week (and it is till going on – they are his first molars!). He was (and is still) awake every¬†couple¬†of hours, every night, meaning I wasn’t functioning pretty hotly. Feeling sorry for myself all I craved was a big bowl o’ mac n’ cheese. Nothing vegan. I wanted it all, full octane. But with a twist….I adapted a recipe for cheese sauce I had seen on a box of corn starch…and ended up with the silkiest, smoothest cheese sauce ever. It was amazing tasting. A flour roux? Never again. From now on I am making it this way. No gritty, heavy texture. As in¬†delicious¬†and simple. And bonus? The sauce is gluten-free as well, so it¬†can¬†be paired over your favorite carb besides ol’ wheaty pasta.

Mac

No diet food here. I won’t lie: it had butter, milk, cheese, sour cream….yeah, basically a large¬†cholesterol¬†pit to wallow in. Some¬†girls¬†eat tubs of ice cream, not me. I just want carb heaven ūüėČ

Mac2

Mac n’ Cheese

Ingredients:

  • 13.25 ounce package multi-grain elbow macaroni
  • 1 large head broccoli
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large sweet onion, peeled and chopped
  • 8 ounces baby ‘bella mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • ¬ľ cup unsalted butter
  • ¬ľ cup cornstarch
  • ¬Ĺ tsp fine sea salt
  • ¬ľ tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 cups whole milk, preferably organic
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, grated
  • ¬Ĺ cup sour cream

Directions:

Trim the florets off broccoli, peel the stalks, discard peels and thinly slice stalks.

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add macaroni, cook for time on package, adding broccoli for last 3 minutes, drain.

Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add oil, onion, mushrooms and bell pepper, sauté until tender and caramelizing.

Meanwhile, heat a medium saucepan over medium. Add butter, melt, whisk in corn starch, salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in milk, whisking constantly, until smooth. Bring to a boil, whisking constantly, boil for 1 minutes.

Take off heat, whisk in cheese until smooth, then stir in sour cream. Taste for salt, add more if needed.

Reserve a small amount of vegetables, toss hot pasta with¬†the¬†rest, in the large¬†skillet. Stir in cheese sauce, gently fold until coated. Serve bowls of mac n’ cheese with the reserved vegetables on top.

Serves 4 large servings or 6 smaller ones.

~Sarah

PS: This could be veganized rather easily – Earth Balance Buttery stick, Dayia cheeze, vegan sour cream and unsweetened non-dairy milk. But hey, it wasn’t what I was craving ūüėČ

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