Another fun aspect of The Accidental Pantry Project is that is creates opportunities to stretch some things into several meals. Tonight I made a super quick mac and cheese thanks to already having about a cup of cheese sauce on hand. Dinner took about 45 minutes including baking time. I mixed about three cups of whole wheat elbow macaroni with sauce, put it in a baking dish, topped with about 10 Ritz crackers and a quarter cup of shredded cheddar and baked at 350 for about 25 minutes.
Okay, so Maywood Marketplace is not to blame, I have been addicted to and cheese has been my favorite food for years. I usually have at least six different types of cheeses in my fridge at any given time. This is particularly excessive as I live alone and am not home nearly enough to be able to consume all this cheese.
Earlier today I went to one of my favorite local grocery stores, the aforementioned Maywood Marketplace. They have amazing prepared foods, a huge produce selection, super fresh bakery items, and an impressive cheese selection complete with endless samples. It is my crack. I feel guilty from sampling and I cannot leave there without a minimum of three cheeses in my basket (so well done making me the target audience in terms of passive aggressive sampling as a selling technique).
Now I have not consumed all the cheese that is already in my fridge, and between a trip to Trader Joe’s yesterday and the marketplace today, I am overstocked. I really need to stop food shopping after the gym…
In any case, I just took an inventory of what is in my fridge. I need to either have a party or do some serious cooking this weekend. Here’s what I found:
- Old Amsterdam
- Sharp Havarti
- Extra Sharp Provolone
- Cream Cheese
- Parmigiano Reggiano
- Grated Parmesan
- Italian 4-cheese blend
- Ricotta Salata
- Herbed Goat Cheese
- Goat Cheese crumbles
I am probably missing something in there…so now I’m thinking of what to make. Cheese straws, mac and cheese, fondue, cheese crisps, nachos, grilled cheese all come to mind….what are some of your favorite cheese recipes?
Much like my Friday Night Dinner for One, I wanted to utilize ingredients in my fridge without hitting up the grocery store unnecessarily. I had close to a half gallon of milk that was going to expire in a couple of days (living alone and working mornings, I was never going to drink it), and some cheese that was probably on the verge of molding. I knew it was mac and cheese time.