I just got a Wolfgang Puck mini rice cooker from HSN. It is inexpensive, has a very small footprint and is versatile, a very handy kitchen tool. You turn it on, it cooks, it turns itself off when ready. It comes in a variety of cheerful colors. I bought turquoise.
The little rice cooker came with a recipe book. I adapted the original recipe for the dysphagia kitchen. I was surprised at how easy and how fast this recipe is. It tastes delicious.
Ready in under thirty minutes, it qualifies as a Quickie for Caregivers recipe.
As long as you do not use cheeses that get stretchy, such as mozzarella and fontina, you may use any combination of cheese you like, including ricotta. Colby Jack and Swiss are also possibilities. Simply substitute the amounts. To make this dish festive, you can add ingredients such as cooked lobster at the very end.
This is easier than opening a box of Kraft mac and cheese and superior in terms of nutrition. It beats the frozen brands too, such as the old standby Stouffer, with a list of chemicals, preservatives and salt as ingredients.
When you make it yourself, you know what’s in it.
Total Time: 30 mins Prep Time: 10 mins Cook Time: 20 mins Servings: 2-3
- 1 1⁄2cups whole grain elbow macaroni (non gluten may be substituted)
- 1 1⁄2cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
- 1cup heavy cream or full fat coconut milk, well stirred and combined
- 3⁄4cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 1⁄4cup shredded parmesan cheese
- 1⁄4teaspoon kosher salt (to taste)
- 1⁄2teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1 pinch paprika (for color)
- 1/2 Teaspoon white pepper
- Combine macaroni, broth and cream in Rice Cooker, press cook and stir occasionally.
- When machine switches to keep warm, add remaining ingredients and stir thoroughly until all cheese is melted. The macaroni should be soft rather than al dente.
- The mac and cheese will have extra liquid. This is good for the puree. Remove the mac and cheese from the rice cooker and place in a glass bowl or stainless streel bowl. Allow to cool.
For the Puree
Place one cup of the mac and cheese and several tablespoons of the cheese sauce in the cup of a mini food processor or the pitcher of a blender.
Pulse five times until the macaroni is broken down. Puree until smooth and serve.
Note: This dish freezes well in one cup servings in glass storage bowls with cover. To serve, thaw for two hours in the fridge or one hour on the counter top. Warm in microwave on half power for a minute. Puree according to above directions. For flavor preservation, I freeze it as the dish, but for convenience, this dish may be pureed and then frozen. For service, it only needs to be thawed and warmed.