I don't know about you, but after being away for a little while, and especially after a long day of traveling, I like to come home to some comfort food. In my mind, San Francisco was exactly as I left it (chilly and foggy) and I started to conjure up recipes in my head for the ultimate mac and cheese to keep the cold away. I knew I had a bag of the amazing, incredible, and wondrous Daiya cheddar cheese in the freezer, so I emailed the husband and had him put it in the fridge to defrost. He's good like that. Of course when I got home it was warm and sunny - not exactly mac and cheese weather - but I persisted and was rewarded with bubbly yummy goodness that made me so happy I could have cared less what was going on outside. Here's what I did:
That up there is the all star line-up of ingredients. Coming out to play was nutritional yeast, Earth Balance, unsweetened soy milk, conchiglie pasta (my fave for m&c because the mini shell shapes trap all that cheesy goodness), and the Daiya. Getting hungry yet? Oh, it gets better.
While the pasta cooked to just al dente, I heated up some soy milk with a pat of Earth Balance in a pot. When that was nice and warm I added the cheese which, because it is Daiya and Daiya is awesome, melted right away. At that point it was a little thick for my liking, so I added one more swirl of soymilk. The picture shows that addition right before I stirred it altogether. Cheese sauce accomplished, it was time to add the pasta.
Such lucky little conchiglie to be able to bathe is that goodness. Creamy, silky, and already smelling like heaven, I then topped it off with a mixture I made in the food processor from bread crumbs, nutritional yeast, and a smattering of melted Earth Balance. I sprinkled one more handful of Daiya shreds for good measure and then the whole shabang went in the oven and baked for about 30 minutes until it was brown and crispy on top and ooey and gooey on the bottom:
I must say, this was amazing stuff. This is sink into your chair, close your eyes, and make guttural noises kind of good. The perfect vegan comfort food for sure, and well worth coming home for. Coincidence aside, as soon as I put it in my mouth, the sun burst through the coulds. No joke:
Best part of this mac and cheese? It's even better the next day. :) So, I've back in SF a little while now and promise to catch up on the eats I've had here over the last few days before I leave again for Colorado at the end of the week. Stay tuned for solid salads, overpriced bites, and late night hot dogs coming soon!