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This weekend was jam packed with fun, friends, and family! Nothing refuels me quite like seeing loved ones. On Friday I went to Rodney’s Oyster House to celebrate my friend Rebecca’s 30th Birthday. I would recommend the Oysters, of course, and also taking a peek at the bathroom decor. 30 of us were there, slurping back the best in seafood. I had not seen her since she and Andrew had their wedding in August – they really know how to throw a party 😉

Next I walked about 25 steps to SPiN Toronto, both with my date for the night Gian! A little Argos Cheer reunion ensued as Jackie was in town from LA! I like to call her Miss. El Eh.

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SPiN makes your clothes and complexion a little wonky looking.

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Family reunion!

On Sunday I decided to make some comfort food. My mom and family dog, Texas, are staying with me for a few weeks between moves. I was craving some baked cheesy goodness and knew I had some bricks of orange and white cheddar to use up. With a little splash of red wine (and a splash into my glass) of a VQA – Guilty Men, and some smoked paprika I had just picked up from the market, we had a meal that I will be making again.

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Here is my recipe for ooey, gooey, macaroni and cheese!

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Macaroni and Cheese

What You’ll Need

  • 1 3/4 cup of elbow pasta
  • 4 tbsp of butter, one saved
  • 1/4 cup of flour (I used up some quinoa flour I had on hand)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup of red wine
  • 2 1/2 cups of milk (I used 2% that I had on hand for my brother staying with me this week)
  • pinch of dry mustard
  • pinch of smoked paprika
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups of cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 1/2 cups of another sharp cheese (I used old cheddar), grated
  • 1/3 cup panko or italian breadcrumbs

What To Do

Pre-heat over to 375°F and place the rack so that it is on the lower third of the oven. Boil the pasta according to directions and cool with cold water in a colander. In the meantime, heat the butter over medium heat in a saucepan, add flour and whisk for a few minutes. Add red wine, milk, dry mustard, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper. Heat and stir for 10 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Stir 2 cups of the mixed grated cheese into the sauce and continue stirring until completely melted. Toss in the pasta and stir. In a greased baking dish (I used my Rachel Ray stoneware (2.25 quart), which I adore), pour in half the mixture, top with 1/2 cup of cheese and then toss with the rest of the mixture. Top with the rest of the cheese. In a saucepan, melt 1 tbsp of butter. Add in breadcrumbs when the butter has melted. Brown the breadcrumbs and then sprinkle over the macaroni and cheese. For added smokey flavour, sprinkle on some more paprika. Bake in oven for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Feeling adventurous? Top with some crispy bacon!

Related Posts:
Recipe: Chorizo Soup
Recipe: Smoked Tofu Stir-Fry
Recipe: Raspberry Chicken

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