Macaroni and Cheese
In the south, we think of macaroni and cheese as a member of the vegetable family and after all no self-respecting meat and three joint would leave this gooey concoction off the list of daily veggies. Always a crowd pleaser, chock full of butter and cheese makes this favorite a definite belly buster and hip plumper!
Mother always says ” a moment on the lips is a lifetime on the hips” and if your short like me, decadent food always shows up on those hips sooner rather than later. You won’t miss an ounce of butter in this dish and your figure will thank you.
1/2 lb elbow macaroni or favorite pasta for mac and cheese
1 tbsp butter, unsalted
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup low-fat cottage cheese, lightly pulsed in blender
1 1/2 cups low-fat or 2% sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp garlic powder
2 tbsp parmesan reggiano, shredded
I personally like to use shells for my macaroni and cheese. This is a great pasta to use – it has 6 grams of protein per serving and is made of organic durum wheat. You can find it a your local Whole Foods.
Always try to use wheat or whole grain pasta when cooking. Barilla has an excellent line of whole grain pasta called Barilla Plus which has added protein and omega 3′s.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Boil large pot of water. When water comes to a boil add a pinch of salt and then pasta. Boil pasta according to directions for an al dente finish.
Drain pasta in colander and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
In same large pot, turn heat to medium. Add butter and let melt. Stir in flour and let cook for one minute. This will be a thick to almost crumbly paste.
Slowly whisk in buttermilk until a thick sauce is formed and there are no lumps. Stir in blended cottage cheese, cheddar cheese, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Once cheeses have melted into sauce, add macaroni back to pot and stir together to coat pasta evenly.
Spray a baking dish lightly with cooking spray and pour in pasta. Sprinkle top with parmesan cheese and bake for 20-25 minutes until bubbly.
Makes 4-6 servings.
You may notice I do use butter even when trying to lighten up a dish. I do not like “light” butter type products. A lot of them contain palm oils and other things I cannot even pronounce. My theory is to use what is real and just less of it. Butter is all-natural and is made from cream and we all know where cream comes from so that makes me feel a lot better about what I put in my body.
I also never buy fat-free products. Whatever they take out to make a product fat-free you have to figure that what is going back in to make it taste good is probably not all that good for you! Try to stick to low-fat and 2% dairy products whenever possible.