While this wasn't the most fantastic mac and cheese recipe I have ever had...it certainly was quick and easy and uses ingredients readily found in most pantries, freezers and refrigerators. The original recipe is from Eating Well. I've made recipes from them before and I find their recipes tend to be hit or miss. Many of the recipes I try from this source are sort of bland, but this dish was not. The original recipe called for full fat cheddar cheese and low-fat milk, but I used skim milk and reduced fat cheddar, because that is what I had on hand, and I think it came out just fine. It uses NO BUTTER...sorry Paula Deen! lol Yet despite the lack of butter, still had good flavor, I think because of the garlic powder and the dijon mustard. I made this as a side dish, but I really think it would be terrific as a main dish with the addition of some sliced grilled chicken breast. This recipe made quite a bit. According to Eating Well it makes 4 servings, but honestly, I found it made closer to 6. A cup and a quarter seemed too big of a serving if you were serving it as a side dish. Perhaps if you make it as a main meal it would be about right. I topped my version with a few crushed club brand crackers for presentation.
No-Bake Macaroni and Cheese w/Broccoli
adapted from Eating Well
Servings - 6 Serving Size - 1/6th of recipe ( about 1 cup) Points Plus per serving - 6pp
Calories - 250.9, Total Fat - 4.4g, Carb. - 37.1g, Protein - 16g, Fiber - 4.3g
8 oz. whole-wheat elbow noodles ( 2 cups ) ( I used my scale to weigh out the portion - and I used Barilla Plus pasta)
1 - 10 oz. package of frozen chopped broccoli
1 3/4 cup skim milk, divided
3 TBS. all purpose flour
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
3/4 cup shredded reduced fat cheddar cheese
1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 tsp. dijon mustard
4 Club crackers, crushed ( for topping )
1. Bring large pot of water, which has been liberally salted, to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 4 minutes. Add frozen broccoli to pasta and continue to cook for 4 - 5 minutes longer or until broccoli is tender and pasta is al dente. Drain.
2. While pasta and broccoli are cooking, heat 1 1/2 cups milk in another pot until just simmering. Whisk the remaining 1/4 cup milk, flour, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl or large glass measure. ( use the glass measure! Less dishes to clean!) Add the flour mixture to the simmering milk and whisk constantly over med heat until the mixture is thick and bubbly. Remove from heat and whisk in cheddar and the Parmesan cheeses and the dijon.
3. Add the drained pasta/broccoli to the cheese mixture and stir to combine. Pour into serving dish, and top with crushed crackers.
Like I said...not the greatest mac and cheese that ever existed...but not bad for a quick week night meal and better than a boxed mix. The boys all liked this dish...and no one complained about the broccoli nestled between the pasta! I also think a cup-ish serving of a pasta and cheese dish for 6 pp is pretty darn good!
I went to my WW meeting today. I am afraid the holiday indiscretions have caught up with me. That's ok though....moving forward. This week's topic was believing in yourself. This is truly something I struggle with. I have more faith in others than I do in myself sometimes. I am going to work hard this year to change that. I am going to believe I can achieve! How about you? Are you a believer or a doubter?