No More Packaged Food!

Without thinking, lots of people buy food to go. That food is wrapped in plastic. Lots of plastic. People don’t really care, they’re just in a rush and need the food that is available quickly. But if everyone is doing that, it means there is tons of trash being used for a minute, wasted every day. If it’s only used for a minute, but has an environmental impact far bigger than itself, then we shouldn’t even bother using it. But people don’t think about that when they buy food in a rush. All they’re thinking about is, “Oh no I’m going to be late for work/school,” not “This plastic wrapping is going to take 400 years to decompose and its going to release toxins into the earths crust that will pollute the whole environment.” That is why it is important for people to be educated on plastic pollution, so they don’t waste so much plastic when buying food.

On this blog I will be covering fun recipes for families that you can make for meals that are easy to make and you can freeze them so they can last longer, instead of going out and buying it in plastic packaging that will only be useful for 15 minutes. You don’t have to cook a big meal every day! Cooking meals can be a fun family activity day to get kids off their electronics, and spend family time together. It’s very fun to cook meals and it’s healthier than store bought food.

A recipe I made this week was mac-and-cheese, because it’s a common food kids love, but normally they get Kraft or Annie’s, which come in cardboard containers, with instant cheese packets. This mac-and-cheese recipe was easy and fun to make, and most importantly, REALLY good! Here is the link if you want to make it.

Here it is also copied over from Epicurious.com:

MAC AND CHEESE (From Epicurious)

INGREDIENTS

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more to grease the baking dish

1 cup panko bread crumbs

24 ounces sharp or extra-sharp Cheddar, grated (about 9 cups total)

1 pound elbow macaroni

3 1/4 cups whole milk

3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons dry mustard

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Equipment: 9- by 13-inch baking dish, flat-edged wooden spoon or heat-safe rubber spatula

PREPARATION

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly butter a 9- by 13-inch baking dish.

In a small saucepan over moderate heat, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter. Place the panko bread crumbs in a small bowl, drizzle with the melted butter, and toss to combine. Add a handful of the grated cheese to the bowl, toss to combine, and set aside.

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the elbow macaroni until al dente. Drain the noodles, without rinsing, then return them to the pot they were cooked in.

In a small saucepan over moderate heat, warm the milk just until it starts to steam and form tiny bubbles around its edges—be careful not to let the milk come to a boil. Remove from the heat.

In a medium saucepan over moderate heat, melt the remaining 3 tablespoons of butter. Add the flour and use a flat-edged wooden spoon or heat-safe rubber spatula to stir the mixture together, scraping the bottom of the pan to prevent burning, just until it starts to turn a light brown color, about 3 minutes. Slowly add the warm milk and stir constantly until the sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the dry mustard, salt, and pepper. Add the remaining grated cheese and stir until it’s completely melted. Adjust the seasoning to taste. Pour the cheese sauce over the cooked elbow macaroni and gently stir to coat the noodles in the sauce.

Pour the macaroni and cheese into the prepared baking dish and top with the panko-cheese mixture. Bake until light golden brown and bubbling, about 30 minutes. Serve hot. DO AHEAD: Macaroni and cheese can be made ahead, put into the baking dish, cooled completely, and kept, covered in the refrigerator, for 2 days. Do not add the bread crumbs until ready to bake. (Chilled Macaroni and Cheese may take longer than 30 minutes to be fully cooked.)

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