Remaking A Classic: Kraft Mac&Cheese

Here’s the thing: Kraft Mac&Cheese is great. I’m a big fan. And I know there are lots of you out there just like me who can’t resist the appeal of that Blue Box treat….and then eat the whole thing in one sitting cough cough…

But there are times when you want to eat something a little more dynamic. This was the case last night. My friend and I wanted to eat something good, but weren’t in the mood to go all out. So we decided to ramp up a classic. We decided to add some salsa and sour cream to our mac&cheese; thus prompting us to call it mex&cheese.

To make this fun revamp here’s the how to:

1. make the mac&cheese per box instructions
2. add about 4 Tbs of salsa (we used medium)
3. add about 2 Tbs of sour cream

Now this was a tasty creation. We did realize that for this to be truly magical we needed to add something crunchy. I recommend adding crushed fritos/doritos/torilla chips.

We also decided to make a classy yet super simple appetizer to snack on while the noodles were cooking: chabbata and brie with raspberry jelly. All you do is slice up the bread, slather on some jelly (fig jam is also INCREDIBLE with brie) and add a slice of brie. If you want to take it up a notch, toss that guy in the toaster over for a minute or two. BOOM.  Super easy and tastes great.

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Let’s Talk About Cookout Food!

Its summertime folks. The ideal time for cookouts. So I thought I’d take a moment to talk about some yummy cookout type foods I’ve been fixing up lately.

I recently purchased a Slice-o-Matic…I know you’re all jealous. I’ve wanted one for a while. Check out this wondrous kitchen tool here. Anyways, I also had some cucumbers, so I decided it was PICKLE TIME. Yup, that’s right…I made pickles.

Check out the Slice-O-Matic in action! woohoo!

 

It sliced’em up just right.

 

2 cucumbers worth of pickle slices.

 

In a saucepan: add a vinegar and water (I used a 1 to 2 part ratio of vinegar to water). I also added lots of garlic and some spices. I added about 1 Tbsp of sugar as well. You basically make them to your own preferences. Once its boiling pour it over the cucumber slices in the jars. Close the jars and then stick’em in the fridge. After about a day they’re perfect for eating!

I brought some of my lady pals home for a beach day last weekend and had the perfect opportunity to test out my pickles.

Another classic cookout treat is Macaroni Salad. Now I’ll tell you straight off that this is not my recipe. Its the killer recipe from my Auntie Merri. Its a total crowd pleaser and super easy to make. Below are the ingredients:

 

Cook up the pasta. Add the jar of mayo and the jar of relish (seriously get this exact one…its so good!). And add whatever spices you like…I added salt and pepper, garlic flakes, and a bit of cayenne pepper for a kick.

 

Mix it all up and you’re done. BOOM.

 

It makes the perfect side for all your cookout treats!

 

Dinner Time

So I’ve had this eggplant in my fridge for like a week. I finally used it all up last night (hooray!). I’m not super familiar with eggplant so I went with something simple and delicious…some eggplant parm.

I sliced the eggplant, put it on a cookie sheet, and brushed it with some olive oil and spices. I roasted it for about 15-20 minutes. Then I placed a slice of mozzarella cheese on top of half the eggplant slices. Put some marinara sauce on top of the cheese, add another eggplant slice, and cover with sauce. I topped it with the cheese I had left to finish it off.

I baked it for about 15 minutes…until the cheese was all melty. It was really yummy!

 

I also got a SWEET new apron the other day! SOOOO pumped to cook/bake in it! (Its got pockets and everything!)

Hello My Name is Kristine and I’m a Stress Baker.

True story.

On a personal level, I tend to get stressed on the regular. Not in the crazy, that-girl-is-a-freakshow kind of way…just in the regular ugh-life-is-crazy kind of way. I have an arsenal of tools to deal with my stress, some healthy and some less healthy *cough* wine *cough* lots and lots of wine *cough cough*

Other ways I handle my crazy is to bake it out. Nothing cures a case of the Mondays like a dozen cupcakes or a batch of cookies. I was feeling lots of feelings yesterday so I channeled that biz into some tasty blueberry muffins. BOOM. I chose blueberry muffins because 1. they’re delightful, and 2. I had a bunch of fresh blueberries from the farmers market in my fridge.

The recipe was actually pretty great. It has that topping that leaves that yummy crystal-like coating on top. The only change I made was to use whole wheat flour instead of white. Whole wheat flour has a different consistency and requires a bit more liquid but overall they came out nice…and made my apartment smell amazing.