Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Day 7 ~ 30 Days of Nothing Challenge

Day 7

Breakfast was the last of the waffles.  Now its time to find a new breakfast recipe. For Lunch, Patrick had a can of spaghetti-os (another emergency food) with a side of trail mix.  I had mini sandwiches made with crackers, peanut butter, and jelly.  But don't feel sorry for me, I ate a lot - like 'half a box of crackers' a lot.

For Dinner tonight, we are having Level 5 Macaroni & Cheese.  That's the name I decided to give the recipe I invented tonight.  Normally, I go one way or the other: I stick to the quick, basic Kraft Macaroni & Cheese from a box (we'll call this Level 1) or slave away over the stove making gourmet macaroni and cheese using fresh veggies, real cheeses and pasta (this would be a Level 10).  This recipe, which incorporates a box of store bought mac & cheese with a few other ingredients ranks in at a solid Level 5.   I'm working with what I have, and its hands-down delicious.

Here's how I made it:

Ingredients (makes 4 servings):
1 box of store bought macaroni & cheese
1 small onion
2 small tomatoes, diced (or half a can of diced tomatoes)
4 tbs. sour cream
1/4 cup diced or shredded cheese, whatever you have (or a few slices of sandwich cheese)
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 cup  powdered milk (you can use regular milk)
1/4 cup butter
1/4 tsp. salt
4-8 Ritz crackers
1 tbs. flax seed (optional)
Spray butter, like I Can't Believe it's not Butter 

Cook the macaroni noodles as directed and set aside.
*Tip: to prevent noodles from sticking, mist with olive oil, or, if you're a little trashy like I am, mist with PAM cooking spray.  It will do the job just as well*
Dice and saute the onion.
Melt the butter.
In a large bowl, mix the cheese packet, diced tomatoes, sour cream, Italian seasoning, milk, melted butter, and salt.  Mix in sauted onions and pasta. Stir.
Spoon into a greased baking dish or four small ramekins (mini casserole dishes).
Crush the crackers and sprinkle over the macaroni mixture with flax seed. 
Spritz cracker topping with spray butter (rather than spray butter, you can melt real butter and pour on top, but my butter supply for the month isn't very big).
Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

The salad greens are from our garden with tomatoes & cucumber from John and Evelyn.  They are sweet to share. I threw together the vinaigrette dressing (just enough for two people) with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, Dijon mustard, dried oregano, salt and pepper.
No measuring required.

<---- Our garden greens

We're also growing mint and today I decided to hang some inside to dry.
I wasn't sure exactly how to go about drying things.  In movies, old ladies and people in Mexico hang bunches of herbs in bundles upside down above their stove.  I guess I'll see how that goes...

One of these days, it will become mint tea. I will keep you updated :)

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