Wednesday, March 16, 2011

No more boxes!

I'm not quite sure how I've survived this long without making this recipe. My mom's recipe card gives it the official title of "Hogy's Mac and Cheese" but I'd like to call it something more along the lines of "Cholesterol Casserole" or "OrgasMAC and CHEESE".

The Best (not-from-a-box) Mac and Cheese
1 1/2 c. sour cream (this will taste fine with low or non fat if you're feeling guilty about the ridiculous amount of cheese...)
1 1/2 c. cottage cheese (I used the small curd kind)
2 eggs
24 oz. sharp cheddar cheese (I used 16 oz. -- one bag -- sharp and 2 c. of regular)
2 c. elbow macaroni
2 c. other small pasta

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain.

Combine everything but pasta in a very, very large bowl. Add pasta and mix well before transferring the entire mess to a 9" x 13" casserole dish. (If you're like me and don't own a bowl large enough, just mix the pasta and cheese stuff together in the casserole dish.)

Bake at 375* for 40 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly and top is golden brown.

Delicious, no? :)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The Saga of the Rice Krispie Treats

Growing up, I can't ever remember my mom making Rice Krispie treats. The first time I ever made them, actually, was as a junior in college with my roommate K. and our friend M. K. kept freaking out over the fact that, as foodie as I was, I had never before made Rice Krispie treats. What a travesty, apparently.

K. stressed the cardinal rule of Rice Krispie treat making: Spray everything that might possibly come into contact with the stuff with cooking spray. Everything. Including your hands. Especially your hands.

Rice Krispie treats
3 T. butter/margarine
10 oz. marshmallows (the big ones!)
6 c. 'crisped/puffed rice cereal' (whatever WallyWorld calls their off brand stuff)

Melt the butter. Add marshmallows and heat/stir until completely melted. Mix in cereal. Spread in a 9" x 13" pan and let cool.

K's rule comes in to play from the very get-go. Spray your butter/marmallow melting pan, even if it's a non-stick one. Spray the spatula (or spoon, whatever) you'll be using to stir/scrape the pan. Spray the pan you're going to Rice Krispie treat it up in. And most importantly, SPRAY YOUR HANDS BEFORE YOU TOUCH THE MARSHMALLOW/CEREAL GOO TO SPREAD IT IN THE PAN.

Why is this last point bolded AND in caps. Funny you should ask...

When I made these the other night, I forgot all about K's cardinal rule. This wasn't really an issue until I went to spread them out in the pan. I was having mixing issues, so I just used my hands. About 2 seconds later, I realized my terrible mistake. I needed cooking spray.

As I tried to peel marshmallowy cereal off my fingers, the goo just got worse. I finally managed to unearth a pinky from the carnage and pried open the cooking spray cabinet. At this point, my hands were coated and I was flailing about, trying to free them.

Once I scraped most of the marshmallow stuff off, I tried to get the lid off the cooking spray. As we all know, that lid design is just about the dumbest thing ever and sure as heck is impossible to open when you really need to. Which is why I was dancing about my kitchen, pleading with a plastic cap to 'come off NOWWWWWW'. I ended up banging the cap on the kitchen counter and screeching at it when, lo and behold, *pop*. I sprayed my hands (now coated with crushed bits of cereal but less marshmallow, as the cooking spray can was covered) and finished smashing Rice Krispie treats into the pan.
Surprisingly enough, none of this got on the floor. Very little got on the counter. The cooking spray can was coated. The spoon and spatula I used were coated with marshmallow which had started to harden and wasn't going to come off without the help of very hot water. Ditto for my plastic mixing bowl and saucepan.


So this, ladies and gentlemen, was my second experience making K's favorite dessert/snack item. Will I be trying these again any time soon? Probably. Just as soon as I make sure my neighbors didn't see me dancing around in the kitchen, pleading with the lid on my can of cooking spray :)