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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Leftover Magic ~ Part Forty-Two

Actually, I'm not quite sure how many "leftover magic" posts I've done, or will do....I just like saying "Part Forty-Two".  As you know from Monday's "Broccoliflower" post, I've got some leftover cheese sauce in the fridge.....and, as it turns out, some elbow macaroni!  Talk about propitious timing! As it turns out, I've got a special guest coming to visit, and need to get a LOT done today!  You know what that means, right? That's right, no time to create a gourmet lunch, AND I NEEDS ME SOME CARBS FOR ENERGY!! Basic science tells us that the body turns foods with complex carbohydrates into the stuff (love that medical term!) that gives our bodies energy. Along with paying attention to nutritional balance and hydration, of course....so just like a long-distance runner, I must carb-load! First, I got the two all introduced to one another....


You would not believe how quickly this dish comes together. I then added to the party with; salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese, Panko bread crumbs and parsley & tarragon from the Pixie-Patch. I preheated the oven to 375....



Then, I literally just dumped the noodles into a favorite small casserole, emptied the cheese sauce on top, chopped the herbs, grated a little Parmesan, and put it all on top with some salt & pepper.



Just mix all together until smooth....and even out the top with your spoon...



I topped with enough Panko (Japanese) breadcrumbs to make a nice, even layer..and dotted with a little fat-free margarine....


While the mac & cheese goodness baked, I mixed some arugula lettuce with good-quality olive oil,  a splash of dark, sweet balsamic vinegar, and a pinch of kosher salt. Remember your greens! Oh, and nutritionally speaking, the darker the green, the better it is for you....


After approximately 15 to twenty minutes, when the bread crumbs on top have turned a light golden brown, pull out your macaroni and cheese, and let cool for a few minutes to set up...


The results? Well, let me just say that after this lunch, I hung pictures and curio cabinets, installed a window blind, unloaded and loaded my dishwasher, and ran and put away two loads of laundry. All before prepping for supper! Carb-tastic! Here's the yummi-ness...


I love that Panko breadcrumbs stay crunchy after baking. The arugula salad was the perfect crispy foil for the richness of the pasta dish.  The tarragon was an inspired touch, I think I am going to have to use it in my macaroni and cheese from now on!

What is your go-to lunch when you need energy, but don't have loads of time?

Eat well, my friends. Love and kindness to all,

                                                                          Pixie

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