Macaroni and Cheese and Roasted Broccoli

What College Has Given Me:

-The Smiths
-Sleeping until noon
-Ability to wear bright lipstick
-Mild  Severe coffee addiction
-Friends who are so smart and so kind
-Roommates who see me at worsts and bests and somehow still tolerate me
-Overall improvement in personal style
-More facebook friends
-Fewer real books read

-Ability to ignore mountains of homework to write this blog
-Realization that truly brilliant professors are few and far between
-Desire to be Better
-Late Night Doughnuts
-Lots  of knockout conversations
-Realization that everyone is basically the same and simultaneously very different and very weird
-Realization that just because someone is hip does not mean that they know what is actually good
-Appreciation of cheap-ass champagne
-Decreased fear of meeting new people
-Every Wes Anderson movie (other than Bottle Rocket)

-Ability to use bed for studying, sleeping, eating, AND drunken jumping
-New understanding of the relationship between race and dance in America
-Twinkle lights
-Several tremendous, Vesuvius-like, emotional meltdowns
-Ability to wear a dress and heels while riding a bicycle
-Less socially awkward (kinda sorta)

-Re-realization that life is not fair
-Letters, received and sent
-Lots of milkshakes
-Unintentional over-sharing
-Fake it till you make it


College and cooking for myself has also instilled in me a deep appreciation for pasta.
 Specifically macaroni and cheese. 

Some days, when the daily grind begins to wear you down, all you want is macaroni and cheese. 
With some roasted broccoli. To make you feel better about all those late night doughnuts and milkshakes.


Stovetop One Pot Macaroni and Cheese 

  • 2 cups large elbow Macaroni, uncooked (about 1/2 lb)
  • 2 cups low fat Milk (about 16 oz) , or more if needed
  • **if more milk is needed, additional 1/4 cup milk at a time for final cooking. **Macaroni pasta varies so much! have additional milk on hand, or be ready to increase the heat if your macaroni doesn't absorb fast enough.
  • 1 tablespoon Butter, for flavor
  • 1/2 teaspoon Mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon Salt, plus additional for final season later
  • generous dash of Nutmeg
  • 1 cup Grated Cheese, any one or combination of  ( jack, cheddar, swiss, mozzarella, gouda)
  • black pepper to taste (optional)

Place raw pasta in colander and quickly rinse under water. Let it drain.In medium sauce pan add milk, raw elbow macaroni, salt, butter, mustard powder and nutmeg.On medium heat, slowly bring milk/macaroni mixture to a simmer, stirring the macaroni frequently as it comes up to a simmer. Stirring keeps macaroni from clumping together, keep an eye on things to make sure that mixture doesn't boil over. Once at a simmer, immediately turn to low (too high heat will evaporate milk) pasta will cook in milk.  Continue to stir the mixture frequently so that macaroni will cook and absorb milk. Keep stirring to prevent the pasta from clumping. It's a little bit like making risotto.  Cook for 15-20 minutes or until milk has been fully absorbed.
If macaroni is not fully cooked, add some extra milk or water, and anticipate spending about five more minutes stirring the macaroni to absorb the extra liquid. Once milk has evaporated, stir in grated cheese, and throughly combine. Turn off heat. Place lid on top of pan and cover for about 5 minutes. This lets the macaroni absorb liquid. Stir a final time and salt to taste. 
Serve immediately.
Roasted Broccoli 

Two large bunches broccoli (about four lbs)
4 garlic cloves
Olive oil
pinenuts (optional)
parmesan (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 F. 
Put broccoli on a cookie sheet. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper. (She says 5 Tbs olive oil, 1 1/2 tsps kosher salt, 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper, but I just eyeballed it.) Now add 4 garlic cloves that are peeled and sliced and toss them in too. Roast in the oven 20 to 25 minutes, until “crisp-tender and the tips of some of the florets are browned.”zest a lemon over the broccoli, squeeze the lemon juice over the broccoli, add 1 1/2 Tbs more olive oil, 3 Tbs toasted pine nuts (I left those out), and 1/3 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese (I left these out as well.)