Terre Pruitt's Blog

In the realm of health, wellness, fitness, and the like, or whatever inspires me.

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Posts Tagged ‘macaroni and cheese’

Shells And Cheese With Beef And Corn

Posted by terrepruitt on September 23, 2019

Shells And Cheese With Beef And Corn

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia in the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, Gentle Yoga, Group Ex classes, YMCA, Zumba, Nia Technique, SJ City Fit, SJCityFit, City of San Jose Exercise Classes, Cambrian Yoga & Cardio Dance, CYCD, Yin Yoga2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 of a medium size onion
1 lb hamburger
garlic salt
can of corn

3 tablespoon butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 C milk

4 cups shredded/grated cheese

1 Cup Panko bread crumbs

bag of pasta shells*

While chopping the onion let the coconut oil heat up in a large pan. Cook the chopped onion in the oil. After the onion is cooked, break the hamburger up into the pan. Sprinkle with garlic salt.  (continued below)

While the meat is cooking, you can make the sauce. Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in the flour a little at a time. Keeping all the lumps out and incorporating the flour into the melted butter. – (Don’t forget about the meat cooking!) – Pour in the milk a little at a time stirring constantly and working out the lumps. Add the salt. Add some cheese, stirring and letting it melt as you go. Continue to add about two cups of shredded cheese.

Cook the hamburger until almost done. (If needed drain the grease from the meat.)  Drain the corn and stir it into the meat. Sprinkle with garlic salt.  Since the corn is already cooked it doesn’t necessarily need to cook with the meat because it will cook in the oven.

Somewhere in the middle of all of that boil the water for the pasta. *I didn’t use an entire bag because it had been opened. I think there was about 3/4th of a bag of small shells. Cook the pasta. Drain the pasta.

Butter a 9X13 baking dish. Preheat the oven to 450° F.

Spread a very thin layer of sauce on the bottom of the buttered dish. Then mix the pasta, a little over half of the cheese sauce, and the meat and corn mixture together. Spread half of the new mixture (cheese sauce and meat-corn) into the dish. Sprinkle with cheese. Then spread the remaining mixture on top of the cheese layer. Then top with the rest of the cheese sauce, spreading out evenly.* Then top with the rest of the shredded cheese and the bread crumbs.

Bake about 25 to 30 minutes. If you want the bread crumbs brown broil it for about 5 minutes (or until they are browned).

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*I am sure mixing all the shells, meat-corn, and cheese sauce together and then putting it in the baking dish would work.  I was just trying to make is a little more like sauce ON the shells.  It all seeped down and was yummy.

This is very rich and very filling. And pretty good. My husband loved it. I always seem to like pasta dishes better the next day. It is as if the flavors all meld and seep into the pasta. So I really enjoyed our leftovers that we ate for a few days.

And, sadly, I didn’t make this with plans to post about it, so I only have the one picture of the finished product. But I will be making it again. I had a friend that says she uses cream corn . . . that might be interesting.

I don’t even know why I put corn in it. I was thinking of two separate things to make at points during the day and when I went to cook, they got combined someohow.

How do you make macaroni and cheese? Do you put meat in yours? Vegetables?

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Recipe Tricks and Tips

Posted by terrepruitt on November 24, 2012

Sometimes I don’t even have to try a recipe to be able to use a portion of it.  Sometimes I do try the recipe and even though I might not use it again, I gain something from it.  A tip, a tactic, a procedure, a trick, ya know . . . . something.  Sometimes the process explained in the recipe makes what I am actually doing escape me.  What am I talking about, right?  Well, I love macaroni and cheese.  I don’t eat it often because, well, it is not high on the health-o-meter.  I will admit that I love the boxed stuff.  I have a box in my pantry for those nights when I just don’t have time to figure out what to eat or I just can’t muster a good healthy answer to:  “What am I going to cook for dinner?”  Usually I restrict the making of the box of macaroni and cheese to when I have a bell pepper or some broccoli.  I add a vegetable to help bring up the nutrients, which is necessary because there really isn’t anything nutritious in that box.  I love Kraft’s Three Cheese and Annie’s White Cheddar.  I actually can’t tell you when I last had the Kraft one.  It does have a lot more chemical’s than Annie’s.  Anyway, I was browsing on My Sister’s Pantry when I saw this: “Instant Mac & Cheese Without The Box”  I was excited thinking I could have that same taste but without the box.

Dance Exercise, Nia, Nia at the City of San Jose, Nia classes in the South Bay, Nia Teacher, Nia Class, San Jose Nia, Nia San Jose, Nia workout, Nia, ZumbaSo I made it.  And it doesn’t taste like the boxed kind.  It really shouldn’t because it is made with better ingredients and it is fresh, but I was kinda hoping for that familiar box taste.  Crazy, I know.  The macaroni and cheese from the recipe was good.  Both my husband and I loved it, but it is basically a mac and cheese with a roux base.  Which I didn’t even THINK about until I tasted it.  Yes, I did make it.  Yes, I know most people would recognize it as a roux as they were making it, but I didn’t.  I was thrown off by the shaking of the milk and the flour.  And the shaking (mixing) that is my take away from this recipe.

Mixing the flour and milk in a container.  AWESOME shake and pour.  No more lumps!  Ever!  I mean, I can make a roux without lumps but sometimes I am in a hurry or trying to do a few other things and so my roux suffers.  I am blessed with a husband who is just happy to have dinner made for him so he never complains about my lumpy white sauce (good boy!).  But the flour and milk in a shakable container — brilliant.

I made soup recently in my slow cooker and the recipe was created for a much bigger crock pot.  Even though I cut back on some of the ingredients, I still ended up with a way-too-full crock pot.  At the last 30 minutes of cooking mark the recipe calls for two cups of milk and a half a cup of flour to be stirred into the pot.  And of course, you need to stir until the lumps are gone.  I could barely stir much less stir lumps out. I was so happy to have the shake-it-up trick from the mac and cheese recipe.  It works so well, I am going to use it for every milk/flour recipe!  So even though I probably won’t make that mac and cheese recipe again I have a new trick.  Yay!

Do you have any tricks that you use all the time that you learned from a recipe? 

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