Cheese is probably my favorite food…the thing I would choose if I could only eat one thing for the rest of my life. My love of cheese started as a kid when my Poppy ( Grandpa) would bring home logs of cheese or squished cartons of ice cream or other dairy products from the dairy where he made cottage cheese. I remember having deli sized logs of provolone cheese in my fridge and smashed boxes full of perfectly fine strawberry shortcake crunch bars in the freezer growing up. I even got to go visit Poppy at the dairy to see him making the cottage cheese. Let me tell you, curdling cottage cheese is one of the WORST smells I have ever smelt in my life, and I’ve worked in a hospital! I’m glad that I just got to eat all of the creamy delicious dairy products though, and still keep my fridge
well stocked over stocked with different cheeses…I even keep extras in my freezer!
I have talked with Husband about having a small farm with sheep or goats once he retires from the Coast Guard and we finally settle down. Id like to try to make homemade cheese from farm fresh milk. I have limited experience in making breast milk cheese for Baby to eat, but after watching the Cooked series on Netflix, I really want to learn more about natural cheese making for the rest of us to eat. I know how much better homemade bread is compared to store bought, and I want to be able to eat cheese that is at the homemade level of deliciousness too.
Having everything I need to make that farm to table cheese happen is a long way off…IF we ever settle down. We have definitely embraced this nomadic lifestyle and get the itch to move every few years. There are so many awesome areas to explore to stay put in any one place for too long. In the meantime, I will continue to buy too much cheese and use it in recipes like mussgo mac and cheese made using up the bits of cheese in my fridge before they get too funky!
- Mussgo, freezer meal, or meal not cooked last week
- Beer can grilled chicken
- Broccoli bacon salad
- Baked potatoes-Thrown on the grill with the beer can chicken for a slightly charred/smokey flavor
- Ricotta summer vegetable pizza
- Ceaser salad
- Ground beef nacho bar ( chips, ground beef, cheese, cheese sauce, fresh tomato, lettuce, refried beans, guacamole, sour cream, diced onion, pickled jalapeno)
- Fresh seasonal fruit
- Use leftover beer can chicken to make a cranberry chicken salad ( I never add the nuts)
- Use leftover sloppy joe meat and nacho bar leftovers to make chili.
Mussgo Mac and Cheese
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 can evaporated milk
1 cup milk
1 tsp ground mustard
1/2 cup of Velveeta
1 cup shredded cheese ( I used leftover bits of garlic cheddar, american deli slices, and mozzarella. The mozzarella gives the cheese sauce a stringy cheese consistency that I love with my mac and cheese.)
1/4 teaspoon turmeric, optional ( I used this to give the cheese sauce a more yellow/orange color since the cheeses I used were mostly white. It didn’t change the flavor of the cheese sauce, but did add in anti-inflammatory health benefits.)
1/2 lb of small pasta like shells or elbow macaroni
Bread crumbs or crackers
Boil water and cook the pasta to al dente and drain while making the cheese sauce. Melt the butter in a large sauce pan on medium heat. Add in flour to make a roux and cook for 1 minute. Slowly whisk in the evaporated milk and regular milk, then add ground mustard, salt, and pepper to taste. Add in cubed Velveeta and stir until melted…this step is important because I find it gives the cheese sauce the best consistency. Add in other cheeses and stir until melted. Make sure you are scrapping the bottom of the pan to not scorch the cheese sauce. Add drained pasta to cheese sauce and stir. It will look like cheese soup, but that extra liquid will be absorbed into the pasta while baking. Pour “cheese soup” mixture into greased casserole dish and top with bread crumbs (store bought or make your own by toasting the heels of a loaf of bread, spreading with butter, and crumbling) or cracker crumbs ( great way to finish off a sleeve of crackers that may be getting stale). Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes.
I take a waste not want not approach to cooking. I saw that I had a bunch of cheese bits left in the fridge and knew I needed to use them before they got covered in mold, so I incorporated mac and cheese into this weeks menu. The boxed stuff with powdered cheese product doesn’t even compare in taste, and this doesn’t cost much more to make (you would have ended up throwing that cheese out anyway)! I come up with a lot of my best tasting dishes by using up the stuff that’s been hanging around in my fridge for a while, so I’m sure you’ll see more of these mussgo creations in the future…they probably will contain cheese!