Tuesday, July 23, 2013

"Mac" & Cheese with Ground Beef & Corn


So... one of the things I made last week was an experiment I'd been wanting to try for awhile.  One of my childhood comfort foods (which became one of my kids' comfort foods in turn, and which they are also passing on to their own) is Macaroni and Cheese - specifically the Kraft blue box - with cooked ground beef and corn stirred in.

I am not eating Kraft dinner anymore - or, for that matter, pasta noodles - so I wasn't sure if this was something even vaguely possible to still enjoy occasionally without just flat out grabbing the blue box.  I'd say this recipe got about 75% of the way there - it's not the stuff of my comfort food memories, but it did hit comfort food territory, we both enjoyed it, and were happy to note  that it reheated very well the next day for lunch.  I was a little short on cheddar cheese, and I think next time, I'd ramp up my cheddar to try to hit that crazy orange Kraft cheesy taste a bit closer (without turning to chemicals to do it).  But other than that - if you're avoiding pasta, cauliflower makes for a good carrier for a good cheesy sauce.

Cauliflower "Mac" & Cheese with Ground Beef and Corn
1 head cauliflower, cut into bite sized florets
1 lb. ground beef
salt, pepper
dash Worchestershire Sauce
2 cups organic frozen corn
1 can coconut milk
1/2 cup shredded Swiss Cheese
1/2 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 t. nutmeg
1/2 t. tumeric
1/2 c. shredded Parmesan cheese
2 T. almond flour
 Brown ground beef and season to taste with salt, pepper, and Worchestershire Sauce.  Add corn and mix.

In a saucepan, heat coconut milk (don't boil) and add shredded cheeses, nutmeg and turmeric until cheese is melted and sauce is smooth.  Add cauliflower, stirring to coat completely.  Add beef and corn mixture, and blend well.

In a small bowl, combine Parmesan cheese and almond flour. Set aside.

Turn cheese mixture into a casserole dish.  Sprinkle almond flour mixture on top.  Bake at 400F for 30-40 minutes.

Note: To keep this grain-free, you'd want to leave off the corn - since I was re-creating a childhood comfort food for myself, I had to add it or it just would not have been right!  But substituting other veggies for the corn would also work just fine for folks without my taste-memories. :)

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like a really fabulous idea - I've gone gluten free, but I haven't inflicted it on my family, and I sure do feel envious when they are eating their mac and cheese. I will definitely be getting some cauliflower to try this out soon!