Friday, November 6, 2009

Penne' and Cheese

First of all, I know these pictures stink.
My photography skills are improving (really!) but these pics
certainly don't reflect it.
Trouble is, I was shooting at night when most of the light was---gasp!---

I didn't know. I can only claim ignorance. I didn't know the havoc
that fluorescent bulbs can do to your photos.
That ugly, mustard-yellow hue. Ye gods. And editing can only do so much.
One of the food blogger's biggest curses: Daylight Savings Time.

Every time you try to photograph something, you end up with absolutely
no natural light by suppertime. And my artificial light and light box attempts
have not proved exactly stellar so far.
But practice does make you, if not perfect, at least mediocre.
That's what I'm shooting for. (shooting-pun-hehe)

This dish was a crowd-pleaser and it was as easy to throw together
as the dreaded blue box that my kids were raised on.
Well, almost as easy. I exaggerate occasionally.

And the cheese. OMG, the cheese.
I can only imagine how good this would be with Red Leicester, but we don't
run to such exotic stuff around here.

Do not be dismayed by the amount of pasta and cheese in the pictures.
I had to double the recipe in order to feed my crew and have a bit
leftover for lunch the next day.

Another Recipe for Mac and Cheese
(adapted loosely from Nigella Lawson's Nigella Express)


8 oz. penne'*
2 cups shredded mixture of cheeses (Nigella uses mature Cheddar or Red Leicester cheese; I used a combo of Cheddar and Monterey Jack)
1 cup evaporated milk
2 eggs
grating of fresh nutmeg (I used ground 'cause that's what I had on hand)


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Cook the penne' according to package directions; drain, and then return it to the pan.

While the pasta's cooking, put the cheese, evaporated milk, eggs, and nutmeg into large bowl and mix well. If you have a very large whisk, as I do, that works wonderfully.

Pour over the penne'; stir well and season to taste.**

Pour pasta mixture into a medium-sized roaster pan or its equal; you want something wide and shallow. Bake for about 10-15 minutes, until surface is bubbly. Serves 4, or maybe 2 very needy people as this is great comfort food.

*Technically speaking, this would make it Penne' and Cheese, I suppose.

**I am a little shy about seasoning a dish before serving. I figure everyone can salt and pepper to their individual taste preference. That being said, this needs a LOT of salt, unless you're using mature Cheddar, in which case it might be just right.

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