Making macaroni and cheese from scratch is almost as easy as the boxed stuff. In fact, I had a reader tell me that she and her husband decided to race against each other – one making homemade mac and cheese and the other making it out of a box – and it took them the same amount of time! And as an added bonus the homemade version tastes SO MUCH better (at least in my opinion). To be honest, I can’t even hardly eat the boxed stuff anymore because the taste of the powdered cheese just doesn’t cut it for me like it did in the old days.
I’ve shared a mac and cheese recipe on the blog before, but recently discovered a different way to make it (below). One night I was actually making Fettuccine Alfredo as a side dish, but I didn’t have any fettuccine on hand so I used macaroni noodles instead. My younger daughter said “Oh mommy, thank you for making macaroni and cheese.” (one of her favorites), and I said “Well, this isn’t exactly ‘macaroni’ babe.” But that gave me an idea. Instead of starting with a roux (butter and flour) to make macaroni maybe I could alter my Alfredo recipe and use less cream and lots more cheese for a new, creamy version of macaroni and cheese. And voila! Here you have it below…
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Inspired by my friend Amy Bishop with Greenbrier Farms (an organically run farm in S.C.), I am excited to share this tasty curry chicken salad recipe with you today. Chicken salad is traditionally made with mayo and unfortunately mayonnaise isn’t exactly a real food. The store bought versions are typically made with refined oils and also contain more than 5 ingredients. The homemade versions are more “real food approved” but oftentimes call for raw eggs, which I am on the fence about, plus we eat mayo so infrequently I don’t feel (for me personally) it’s worth the time to make it from scratch. So I’ve tried substituting plain yogurt in dishes like chicken salad, egg salad, and deviled eggs without much success because, frankly, I think plain yogurt is rather plain tasting and the flavor – or lack thereof – was a little too overwhelming in these dishes. So I was thrilled to be introduced to the idea of adding curry to chicken salad, because curry has such a wonderful flavor it totally makes up for what the yogurt is missing.
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It’s no secret that we absolutely LOVE cheese in our house. And we don’t discriminate either. Whether it’s sharp cheese, soft cheese, or even “stinky” cheese…there’s always a place for it in our kitchen. That’s why I was so excited when La Bonne Vie asked if they could send me some cheese to develop a recipe with (um, ya!).
La Bonne Vie, which translates into “The Good Life,” offers a variety of both Brie and goat cheeses…two of our favorites. To find out where you can purchase their products in your area just enter your zip code on their “store locator” page. Then after you get a hold of their cheese we’d love for you to try out some of the “real food” recipes below. And in my opinion the “Grilled Brie and Apple Sandwich” would be fabulous with the addition of some leftover turkey on it (hint, hint). A big thank you to La Bonne Vie for sponsoring this post today! Continue Reading »
In case you’ve seen these apple sandwiches around, but have no idea how to make them…this is for you!
First, you’ll need…
- An apple (of course!)
- Some nut or seed butter like peanut butter, almond butter, or sunflower seed butter
- Large knife, small table knife, and cutting board
- Small round cookie cutter (I got mine in a set from Sur la Table)
- Lemon – to keep apple from turning brown
- Toothpicks – helps hold sandwich together in a lunchbox that likely gets tossed all around!
Before I dive right into the 8 easy steps for making an apple sandwich I’d like to make sure everyone knows about our sponsor, No More To Go
…as in No More “To Go” Meals! They are a meal planning service that will email you 5 complete dinner recipes along with a corresponding grocery list every week. All recipes have modifications for gluten free, vegetarian, and kid friendly meals. They are offering 30% off to our readers so when you check out be sure to use the “100Days” coupon code.
1. Cut off the top of the apple and then make the first thin slice (a.k.a. the top of the sandwich).
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I was recently introduced to Mara’s Pasta, which is a unique type of whole-wheat pasta developed by a dad after he could not get his daughter (Mara) to accept the flavor and texture of standard whole-wheat pasta. Concerned about the lack of nutrition in the white flour pasta she was regularly consuming he decided to make his very own milder version of whole-wheat pasta that was both nutritious and delicious (what a nice dad!). Most pasta products are made from Durum wheat, which has a distinct taste and texture that most of us are familiar with, but Mara’s Pasta is made from its very own unique variety of (non-GMO) wheat called MaragrainTM.
Mara’s Pasta recently asked if I could develop some recipes using their products, which I am excited to share with you below. But don’t stop there because Mara’s also has an entire page on their website dedicated to recipes including some that will help you utilize all your fresh summer produce including “Mara’s Fettuccine with corn, squash, peppers, tomatoes, and cilantro” and “Mara’s Whole Wheat Fettuccine with Tomato Basil Sauce.” Also, if you’d like to get 15% off your Mara’s Pasta order use coupon code “100DAYS” (now through August 5th) and then “update” your shopping cart before checking out on their website. A big thank you Mara’s for sponsoring today’s post!
Mara’s Peanut-Thai Pasta
The ingredients in this pasta sauce may sound unusual at first, but the end product is an exotic and delicious combination. My girls loved this recipe so much that they even accidentally ate a few cucumbers along the way. I will definitely be making this again…possibly even for their school lunch boxes soon where I think I’ll dice the cucumbers even smaller so they are harder to pick out.
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Jill Miles, Assistant to 100 Days of Real Food
Have you noticed lately that everyone seems to be avoiding certain foods for one reason or another? Maybe it’s a food allergy or intolerance or perhaps just a dietary preference. Whatever the reason, avoiding certain foods can present challenges for both eating and cooking, but, as I have found, you can overcome them.
I am Jill (assistant to 100 Days of Real Food) and a little over 2 years ago, my husband started suffering from digestive problems following back surgery. After countless visits to doctors, including specialists, numerous medical tests and a weight loss of 40 pounds, we still had no answers. While his most severe symptoms had subsided, he was still not feeling well and was continuing to lose weight. Frustrated, we decided he should eliminate both gluten (despite him testing negative for celiac disease) and dairy (for which he had tested positive for a slight allergy although the doctors did not recommend avoiding it). It has been about 9 months now and his weight has stabilized and he is feeling pretty well overall. Even better news though is that his change in diet, although forced upon him, was really a gift. His diet of highly processed foods was finally catching up with him, even placing him at risk for elevated cholesterol (combined with a family history of high cholesterol and heart disease). Having to eliminate so much from his diet forced him to add in more whole foods, including fruits and vegetables. So, at the end of the day, while the initial change in diet was both difficult and frustrating at times, the long-term health benefits have been immeasurable. Continue Reading »