Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Picture a Day - Day 84

Religion is a topic I generally shy away from on here. It can be quite a little hot button topic and I only have my own little view point on it(it's probably just my introverted ways showing up, I keep random things secret kinda like a squirrel and his special black gold nuts). But today is the start of my 40 day reminder that I got myself married into a new situation.

I am a Methodist. For those who don't know what makes our denomination so much better than others (especially those Presbyterians who I swear we are not just like)we drink grape juice instead of wine, if there is going to be an AA meeting it will be held in a Methodist church in your area (one of the tenants used to be no drinking but that doesn't seem to be enforced as such anymore), we all love a good sing song and will try to outsing each other in church (bring ear plugs), and the backbone of every Methodist church is cookies, punch and pot luck.

But my husband is a Catholic. In our early dating days my first experience with the Catholic church was an Easter when I didn't look as out of place having no idea when to kneel, sit, stand or juggle. Each week I began to learn all the secret signals but I choose to not partake. As I am considered "unworthy" of communion then I figure I must be "unworthy" of the sign of the cross or that other one before the reading of the gospel.

Lets just say I shall not be converting to Catholicism any time soon. There are just too many of their tenants I do not agree with. And it really isn't any source of contention in our house as my husband doesn't really agree with them either and we like to debate it but he is a stickler for rules and likes the challenge of having to follow them.

So begins one of the biggest Rule Times for Catholics: Lent. And now this Methodist who was only vaguely aware of it in that every Friday in winter it seemed the Knights of Columbus were having a fish fry has to think of meatless dishes.

While today is actually a fast day (I can't believe they still do those, really) I am making a very simple Mac & Cheese. I've been looking for a good recipe for the past few years and I hope this one will be it.

I can hear you asking yourself but if you're going to make it tonight then how can you have pictures now? Because this recipe is one of those wonderful timesavers but pain in the butt for the unorganized that you make the night before.

The first step is to start some water boiling (isn't it always?)

While that's going on pull out the cheese grater and get to work. I got some Emmentaler (kinda like swiss) and Cheddar for this dish, though another popular one is the fondue cheese Gruyere.

Then grate as though your life depended on it.
You should wind up with about 3 cups of cheese though I went a bit higher cause I like cheese Now here's the interesting part. Take 8 ounces of elbow macaroni and place it in the boiling water, but only for 4 minutes. This is so it'll get very al dente. Then just rinse off and cool:Next, you mix in with the cheese 1 and 1/4th cup of milk and 2 cups of cream:
Then you fold in the al dente macaroni and this sits in the fridge overnight sucking up all the delectable creamy and cheesy goodness Tonight when we get home I just have to place it in a baking dish, cover the top with some cheese and bread crumbs then bake for 20 minutes at 400. Easy peasy really.

If it tastes really good then I'll share it tomorrow, if not then we shall never speak of this again (the mac & cheese I made last year was awful. Its the centerpiece in my hall of shame). I have high hopes as the cream and milk mix with the cheese was already tasting pretty cheesy (I swear I had to taste it for the pepper and salt I added, I wasn't just curious).

Is anyone else out there celebrating Lent? If so, could you please share you meat or fish dishes? I got nothing in my repertoire and it really shows by about the third or fourth week. I do have some sole and perch in my freezer just waiting for a little attention if that helps.

P.S. If there are any Futurma fans out there Run! don't walk to buy the last movie. I loved it. It was a very touching finale (though I pray it isn't).

Also Linda is psychic, if you need any lotto numbers ask her.


EthidiumBromide said...

Wait. I'm confused. If it's a fast day, why are you making mac and cheese? Aren't you supposed to be, you know, fasting? Or is the mac and cheese just for you and your husband is the one fasting since he is the Catholic?

withoutadornment said...

Meat and Fish dishes? I've never heard of that during lent, but then again, I'm also not catholic. I know in some strands of Anglican-ism, I think you're not supposed to eat eggs during lent - that's why there are Shrove Tuesday pancakes, to use up all the eggs (and they're so delicious to boot.) But we didn't make any this year. Or we'll be rebels and make them during lent.

But I do partake in lent as a season of sacrifice, abstinence and purifying of your soul. I haven't quite decided what I'm going to sacrifice, abstain from or what I'm going to do to purify my heart, but that's okay.

Your Mac and Cheese looks tasty!

Blablover5 said...

It's a "fast" day in that you are expected to have one regular meal and that's it. No snacks or anything. I think you may be allowed to have something small. But just Mac & Cheese would fit either bill.

Though my husband did try one year to truely fast and not eat anything or drink anything but water and I about killed him.

EthidiumBromide said...

Wow. Catholics "fasts" are lame. Fasting Judaism is true fasting -- absolutely no food OR water for 25 hours.

Blablover5 said...

Oh it gets even more interesting as they used to have to fast from the midnight before mass til after to prepare themselves for eucharist, now it's just an hour before. Vatican II made some weird rulings.

Newlywed Next Door said...

Thanks for helpin' us out! Hope you have a great Ash Wed!

Linda said...

Not psychic, just an insanely good memory.
I grew up Catholic so I remember the good ole days of fish on Fridays. But we usually just ate fish sticks! Or tuna.

Anonymous said...

The word you're looking for is tenet, not tenant.

Blablover5 said...

Ooh I just got my first Grammar Nazi anonymous comment.

I think that means I've made it on the internet.

Cleric at Large said...

We're not so much 'fasting', but I'm planning to try at least one not-meat meal recipe a week this year during Lent. They will happen on Fridays, but mostly because although my husband often cooks, that's the day that I'm home, and I'm the one who wants to try new recipes.

This week, we're having this: