Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Lentil Veggie Mac and Cheese

Do you want to know another thing that I learned about myself when I was traveling so much?

I cannot iron.

Well, I guess I can iron, but cannot iron well.

In many ways I could excel at a homemaker-- I love to make home cooked meals (obviously). I have being doing my own laundry since high school (thanks, Mom, for instilling this in me). I like to knit (yes, sometimes I'm an old lady). But I fail at the ironing. Probably because since high school my outfit of choice has been jeans and a tshirt. Every now and then I'll dress it up with a sweater. Maybe a dress here or there if I'm attending a wedding. But my day-to-day wardrobe has never required an iron. During my job interviews I was wearing some new professional clothes which certainly do require an iron. You should have seen me trying to iron out the creases I had just ironed into the blouses. And those pesky dress pants and jackets. Don't even get me started. I suppose this is a skill I should learn before I start my career this fall.... but I've got a few months yet.

Until then (or while I'm practicing), I'll stick with home cooked meals. How about some garden fresh mac and cheese with lentils. Aren't the colors beautiful? This is perfect for a meatless Monday especially when it is cold outside. Comfort food.

Now who's up for an ironing lesson? I'll pay with yummy food. :)

Lentil Veggie Mac and Cheese (adapted from The Lean Green Bean)
1 cup chopped bell peppers (I used a combination of red and yellow)
1 cup chopped broccoli
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups torn kale
1 cup dry mini ziti noodles
3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 oz goat cheese
1 cup skim milk
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp flour
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
2 cups cooked lentils

Preheat oven to 400F. Coat an 8-in round baking dish with cooking spray.

Cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain.

Heat the peppers, broccoli and garlic in a saucepan over medium high heat for about 3 minutes until starting to turn tender. Add the kale and continue to cook until everything is tender, about 6-7 minutes. Remove from the pan.

Melt the butter in the pan. Whisk in the flour. Slowly add in the milk whisking constantly. Add the cheeses and spices and continue to whisk until melted completely. Stir in the veggies, lentils, and pasta and toss to coat completely. Transfer to the baking dish.

Cover with foil and bake for about 15 minutes.

Serves 3-4.

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