Sunday, March 24, 2013

Homemade Mac and Cheese

Mac and cheese has always been a favorite of mine. Growing up I loved Annie's mac and cheese, in fact it was the only boxed kind I would eat! Now I have started making my own varieties and there are so many options!

This week I found a great recipe for a tomato based mac and cheese with wilted spinach. This is the more creamy style of macaroni and is not baked. However, you could easily bake this too if you love those crispy edges!

Ingredients, recipe adapted from April 2013 Cooking Light
- 8 ounces (about 3 cups) small pasta shape
-1 tablespoon olive oil divided
- 1 pint grape tomatoes
- 1 medium shallot diced
- 2 minced cloves of garlic
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
- 1 and 1/2 cups skim milk
- 4 ounces chopped spinach
- 2 cups shredded sharp white cheddar cheese
- salt and pepper to taste

1.) Preheat the broiler
2.) Cook the pasta according to the directions but leave out any fat or salt then drain
3.) Place the tomatoes on a small sheet pan and toss in half the olive oil, salt, pepper and thyme
4.) Roast under the broiler until the tomatoes start to brown and burst open
5.) In the same pot you cooked the pasta, heat the remaining olive oil then add the shallots and garlic cooking for 2 minutes until golden brown
6.) Add the tomato paste and flour and cook for about 2 minutes stirring constantly
7.) Whisk in the milk and bring to a boil, stirring frequently to get all the lumps out
8.) Cook the milk mixture about 4 minutes until thickened, melt in the cheese and spinach and stir until smooth
9.) Add the cooked pasta, season with salt and pepper and top with the roasted tomatoes. Enjoy!

Whenever Sunday night rolls around I always feel caught off guard. Why does the weekend always go by so fast? 

On Saturday it was very snowy and windy so running outside was out of the question. I made a date with the treadmill at the gym in my apartment complex and ran 5.5 miles. The run went surprisingly well for me especially considering I usually don't have the best treadmill runs. I was kept entertained by Yard Crashers on HGTV. It's pretty amazing what just painting a house can do.

What is your favorite way to pass time when you run inside?

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