Tag Archives: recipe

comfort food: blonde brownies

Butter, brown sugar, white chocolate … what’s not to like? These bars are dense, chewy, extremely rich, and always a hit.

1 cup butter, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 eggs, at room temperature (put them in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes)
2-1/4 cups flour
1-1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 cups white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease a 13″x9″ baking pan, or spray with nonstick cooking spray.

Beat butter, brown sugar, and vanilla at medium speed until light and fluffy (2 minutes). Add eggs one at a time, mixing until well combined.

Stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to the butter mixture, and mix on low speed until combined. Stir in chipe.

Bake 25-30 minutes, until golden brown. Cool before cutting.

If you prefer, you can use any other flavor of chip rather than white chocolate. You can also add 1 cup of chopped macadamia nuts (or other nuts).

comfort food: macaroni and cheese

one of my favorite comfort foods

Macaroni and cheese: one of my favorite comfort foods

What with the events of the week, when I chose a menu for this week’s Wednesday night Chalice Night dinner at church I wanted to serve comfort food. I decided on tomato-basil soup, macaroni and cheese, tossed salad, and chocolate-chip cake, all made from scratch (well, except the croutons in the salad).

Although the past couple of weeks I’ve had leftovers (summer attendance is light), this week I ran out. A few people told me they came specifically because of the menu. This kind of home cooking speaks to people. It’s “like mom used to make.”

The next time you want something incredibly delicious, warm, and satisfying, make the following macaroni and cheese. It isn’t difficult, and although it takes longer than mac ‘n’ cheese out of a box, the results are so overwhelmingly superior that it’s worth every minute. Because I ran out last night, I made more this evening, so I could have some. It’s in the oven as I write this.

Macaroni and cheese

6 oz elbow macaroni
2 cups small-curd cottage cheese
1 cup sour cream
8 oz American cheese (I use generic Velveeta)
1 egg

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Boil the macaroni according to package directions. Don’t overcook it; you don’t want it to be squishy.

While the macaroni is cooking, grease a 2-quart baking dish. Place in it the cottage cheese, sour cream, and egg, and mix well.

After trying to find an alternative to saying “Cut the cheese,” I find there is no suitable variation. Cut it into chunks an inch or two across — you don’t have to be exact — and mix them into the cottage cheese mixture. (My friend and co-Wednesday-night-conspirator Jack tells me that this mixture in general, and the cottage cheese in particular, looks disgusting. You may think so too. Don’t worry; everything will turn out fine after a little time in the oven.)

When the macaroni is done, drain it, and then pour it into the baking dish. Mix well. No, the cheese isn’t going to melt now — the ingredients are all too cold from the refrigerator. It’s OK.

Put the dish in the oven and bake 15 minutes. Remove the pan and stir carefully but thoroughly, so all the melted cheese is mixed in.

Return the pan to the oven and bake another 15 (if you want it set but not brown) to 30 (if you want it brown and a little crunchy on top) minutes.

Yummmm. Time for me to eat.