We decided earlier to move our dinner date from Friday to Saturday for various reasons. Mainly, he had to be home Friday evening for something important. So tonight is the night I cook for two! YAY!
He sent me a recipe that he wanted me to make. It’s always a nice, easy dinner-making experience when he does that. I had to work from home all morning, then my coworker friend came to get me so we could buy the part for my car. Well, he was a bit late, by around an hour, and there wouldn’t be enough time to do so. Instead, he took me to buy some supplies that I needed, then dropped me off back at home before he had to be at work (therefore saving me a 2 hour walk). I still needed some other cooking supplies, but figured I could get those when G got off of work. I had a surprise I wanted to buy for him anyway (one that was too large to carry home myself).
I walked to Family Dollar this morning to pick up a few things that I’ve been needing for my apartment. Things like super glue and cotton swabs and air fresheners…just little things. I also used 2 coupons even though I have lots of money right now because I’m a cheapskate. The super glue was to fix my cupcake timer!!! I can use it again! I was so happy, I included it in my breakfast picture. (Cupcake timer was not consumed.)
Usual. It was an action-packed day! No time for cooking until later!
Thomas Jefferson-style Macaroni and Cheese
1 (16 ounce) package elbow macaroni
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/8 teaspoon white pepper
3 cups milk
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese,
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
2. Fill a large pot with lightly salted water and bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling, stir in the macaroni, and return to a boil. Cook the pasta uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is cooked through but still slightly firm, about 8 minutes. Drain well.
3. Melt 1/4 cup butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. When the butter starts to foam and bubble, stir in the flour; cook on medium heat until flour just begins to turn pale yellow, 3 to 4 minutes. Add thyme, cayenne pepper, and white pepper; cook and stir another minute, then whisk in 1 cup of milk until smooth. Pour in remaining milk and whisk again. Bring the sauce just to a simmer.
4. Stir in nutmeg, Worcestershire sauce, and salt; simmer on medium-low heat until thickened, about 8 minutes, whisking often. Turn heat off, then add 2 1/4 cups of Cheddar cheese; stir until melted and combined. Add Dijon mustard.
5. Transfer the macaroni into a casserole dish, then pour in the cheese sauce; stir to thoroughly combine sauce with pasta. Mix panko bread crumbs and 1 tablespoon melted butter in a small bowl, and sprinkle crumbs on top of macaroni and cheese. Sprinkle remaining 3/4 cup of Cheddar cheese on top.
6. Bake in the preheated oven until bread crumbs and Cheddar cheese topping are golden brown, about 20 minutes.
*There was….a LOT of food. Jesus H. I used REALLY expensive, fancy cheeses in this. It was incredible. It was SO cheesy and SO creamy and just fantastic. I LOVE this recipe! I may have also used more cheese than was called for, but we’re insane. He loved it. I served myself about 1/3 of this and gave him about 2/3. He was hungry. I was, but I’m also a lot smaller. I literally wouldn’t be able to fit half of this into my stomach, hehe! He was all worried that a half-recipe of this was not going to be enough. Ah, he will learn.
I got to spend time with my lovely and eat really good food. All in all, a splendid day! Very hectic, but after dinner, very relaxing and time spent in such a way that is always dear to my heart.
As we’ve been going out to eat less often, I have been losing weight. I am happy about this. It is good to know that I can keep things under control with that simple gesture. That, and I haven’t been making as many sugar-packed breakfasts anymore. I’ve either resorted to more savory breakfasts or cereal on days that I know will be filled with work and general busy-ness. I have lost half an inch around my waist already. We’ll keep it that way.