One of the things I’ve come to find is that folks are either good at cooking or baking, or vice-versa. (Or maybe they just prefer one culinary art over the other?) It’s part of the reason you have variety of chefs involved on a restaurant level – you have your head chef, sous chef, and a pastry chef to name a few. Each one handles a specific task and brings a particular piece to the culinary puzzle.
While I realize a lot of the recipes I talk about and share (either the recipes themselves or photos) pertain to cupcakes, I’m more than just cupcakes. I’m more than just desserts – in general.
When I was growing up, my family celebrated birthdays with not only a homemade birthday cake, but with a celebratory dinner. My mother and grandmother would make lasagna for my sister’s birthday, southern fried chicken for my brother’s birthday, and creamy mac n’ cheese for my birthday. (Sometimes those items would change depending on what we wanted for dinner, but I love some good homemade mac n’ cheese and would usually request it for my birthday.)
CONFESSION: I don’t like baked mac n’ cheese because I was raised on stovetop mac n’ cheese.
Macaroni & Cheese
1 box Elbow Macaroni (1 lb)
5 c Water
1/4 c Butter
1/2 lb Cheese (Cubed or Shredded)
1/2 c Milk
On a stovetop, boil water in a large saucepan.
Add elbow macaroni and cook until noodles are tender.
Drain noodles and place back in saucepan.
Add butter, cheese, and milk to noodles.
Stir over low heat until cheese is melted and noodles are covered.
NOTE: My mother and grandmother would use a brick of Velveeta to make their mac n’ cheese. Experimenting with other cheeses since I left home, I’ve used white cheddar, gruyere, asiago, pepperjack, emmentaler, muenster, colby, camembert or dubliner. I’ve found that harder cheeses are a little more difficult to make the mac n’ cheese creamy. I will generally grate the cheese as finely as I can and occasionally add a little Velveeta (or just a couple slices of American cheese singles) to help bind it together and keep it creamy.