20 Sep I Pledge Allegiance To The Mac
There’s a bad stigma often associated with Macaroni and Cheese. The savory delicacy I enjoy so much unfortunately adorns a bad rep. A yummy one, but a bad rep nonetheless. In fact, the other day I read an article where it stated that “there’s nothing good or healthy about the cheesy elbow-shaped pasta.” Really? Nothing? The cringe-worthy, but (somewhat) authoritative article went on to describe the aromatic delight as nothing more than a calorie-filled, high-fat dish saturated with a ton of cheese, heavy cream, etc, neither pleasing to the inside of your body, or outside for that matter. For many, it is simply a delicious once-in-a-while-guilty-pleasure. For me however, it is a delectable meal enjoyable any day of the week, and let’s just go ahead and include the weekend too, just because.
Mac and cheese invokes a different feeling in my heart…and stomach. It is more than just a tasty treat. For me, it is a throwback to the days of barely reaching the counter-top, cooking with my Mom, laughing, learning, and creating lifelong stories in the process. It is the distinct smell of my Grandmother’s kitchen, and the inimitable recipe passed down from her Mother to my Mother, and now to me. It is the immediate cheesy comfort that never fails to satisfy my soul, or taste buds. It’s the memories that always seem to accompany a good bowl of mac and cheese.
While I agree to some extent with the concerns acknowledged in the article, there are still ways to remain loyal to the gooey goodness without compromising your health. Not every bowl of macaroni and cheese is classified as a high-fat disaster. You can make a healthy mac and cheese meal without taking away from the flavor you and I have grown to love so much. Try substituting whole-grain for regular pasta to add a boost of fiber, or perhaps add some green veggies in there, such as spinach or zucchini to give it a healthier flare. Kelly always says “Everything in moderation. Just each 4 ounces and combine it with a side of grilled vegetables or a salad and a our low fat cornbread.” One of my favorite pairings happens to be asparagus. It’s delicious!
Fat-free sour cream and low-fat cheese is also another way to cut back on the fat, as well as using evaporated non-fat milk instead of whole milk when making your cheese sauce. Furthermore, try thinking beyond the cheddar. By playing with sharper flavored cheeses like Parmesan and Pecorino Romano or even Gruyere, you’re able to use less of the cheese, subsequently reducing calories.
Like all things, there must be a balance. But give up mac’n’cheese for good? It won’t happen.
I pledge allegiance to the mac….forever!
Written by Krystle Carmona