Friday, January 22, 2010

Food and Angels @ The Tiki Hut

Two things before I get started. First, on Monday I'm announcing a fabulous giveaway that I think everyone will love, especially all you foodies and second, if you're here for Art Work Friday or Friday ~ Finding Beauty, scroll past this recipe and you'll find my entry for this week.(But you may want to check out this recipe while your here!)

Comment Update: I received a couple of emails and it seems that on my permalinks at the end of my post it says, " #Thoughtful comments. Click here to had yours" the link isn't working. However, at the end of the comments there is a Post Comment link that is working.  Sorry, I'll try and get that figured out.

Okay, I have a confession — I lied. There I said it. I freely admit that I lied to Libby over at Twirl and Taste. She posted a recipe in December for Kiss Your Mama Chicken and Rice Soup and I commented that I hadn't eaten Velveeta cheese for over 20 years, but that her recipe looked so good I was going to break my No Velveeta Rule to make her soup. Well, I did and it was delicious, but when I was at the store picking up that cheese I had a flashback and remembered that I did have Velveeta more recently than 20 years.

I haven't made this recipe in years, but it is by far, the BEST Macaroni and Cheese I've ever had. It is decadent comfort food at its finest and while my hips say no, my lips say — seconds please. So today for all my Foodie Friday Friends I offer you Patti LaBelle's

Over The Rainbow Macaroni and Cheese

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded Muenster cheese
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded mild Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) Velveeta , cut into small cubes
  • 2 large eggs , lightly beaten
  • 1/4 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter a deep 2 1/2-quart casserole.

Bring the large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the oil, then the elbow macaroni, and cook until the macaroni is just tender, about 7 minutes. Do not overcook. Drain well. Return to the cooking pot.

In a small saucepan, melt eight tablespoons of the butter. Stir into the macaroni. In a large bowl, mix the Muenster, mild and sharp Cheddar, and Monterey Jack cheeses. To the macaroni, add the half-and-half, 1 1/2 cups of the shredded cheese, the cubed Velveeta, and the eggs. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to the buttered casserole. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup of shredded cheese and dot with the remaining one tablespoon of butter.

Bake until it's bubbling around the edges, about 35 minutes. Serve hot and get out your handkerchiefs, because Patti says that the sure sign of a good cook is if their macaroni and cheese will make you cry and honey, this recipe will make you cry!

I first saw Patti prepare this dish on Good Morning America in 1999. I can easily remember the year because I still have the recipe I printed out that very day. I also have the recipe in one of my favorite cookbooks, LaBelle Cuisine: Recipes to Sing About. This is one of those lip-smackin', mouth-waterin' cookbooks that every Southern cook and those who want to cook down-home Southern-style should own. Recipes include: Black-Eyed Peas with Smoked Turkey Wings, Don't-Block-The-Blessing Dressing, Aunt Hattie's Scrumptious Sweet Tater Bread, Geechee Geechee Ya Ya Gumbo and Child, That's Good Cheap Pot Roast! (Don't you just love the names Southern cooks give to their recipes?)

If your interested, I have this cookbook and two others by Miss LaBelle in my Tiki Hut Store. A link to my store is in my sidebar, but you can quickly find this cookbook here.

Be sure to stop by Michael's at Designs By Gollum for more Foodie Friday posts. I don't know about you, but I really can't wait to see what Bandwidth contributed this week!

Art Work Friday

This week I was taking pictures around The Hut for an upcoming post on my collection of seashells and when I uploaded them I found this one:

I almost hit the trash button, but then I thought I would play around with it in Photoshop and after several hours and lots of layers this was the result:

What do you think? AND be honest please, I can't grow as an artist without constructive feedback.

My entry for Friday ~ Finding Beauty is related to this altered photo. My son, THE ARTIST, sent me this feedback in an email after I sent these photos to him, "I love it!!! great job... Really think you should do a series of photos with this technique!"

Now you may think he said this because he's my son, but while he has always been supportive, he always gives me his honest advice. I think this is the first time he didn't tell me to change anything or tell me to try this technique instead. Now I think that is just beautiful and it just did my artist heart good!

Don't forget to come back on Monday to sign up for my Giveaway!

30 Thoughtful Comments:

Claudia said...

I 100% agree with your brilliant son!

Of course I am a little partial twards angels. (check out 2 posts ago ;)

Not only is she lovely but so is your yummy recipe-- ugggh I think I will just have to give it a try... my hinnie is growing as we speak.

Thanks so much for joining FFB.


Anonymous said...

First of all, I want to give you two thumbs up with that little angle touchup! It's beautiful! You're good!
Now that mac and cheese does sound so good. I like the sound of those other cheeses in there. Yummy. I'll try it!
Be a sweetie and thanks for popping in to see me today,
shelia ;)

Anonymous said...

That Mac&Cheese looks so cheesy and wonderful. I will have to try it. Thanks Have a great weekend. Denise

Peg said...

You did a wonderful job on the angel photo, but we need a tutorial! I got an updated copy of Photoshop Elements for Christmas, and now I need to learn to use it to "tune up" photos. That macaroni looks soooo good too.

Signing Out said...

Ooh, that mac & cheese looks yummy!


Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Rhonda I like the new look of your blog! Very clean and easy on the eyes.

I know Patti la Belle is a good southern cook as well as a singer, i have that cookbook myself...yum yum!

The angel photo does look like a work of art! Very framable. Sometimes the best works are happy accidents.

I'm looking forward to you're give away...sounds tempting!

X0 Pat

Patricia @ ButterYum said...

How could you go wrong with all that cheese? ;)


The Muse said...

quite appropriate that your images work so well together in this post...
a divine offering, velveeta and all :)

Maya @ Completely Coastal said...

Oh, boy, Rhonda... that recipe, if I ate that I'm afraid that I couldn't have any ice cream or butter on my breakfast muffins for a whole week.
It might be worth it, ha!

Have a fabulous weekend!

dee dee said...

I guess I need to invest into photo shop! Love what you did with the angel photo! I only have two recipes with velveeta, I should add this one to my list!
Dee Dee

Amy said...

That is some serious macaroni and cheese-- and it looks delicious!

CrazyCris said...

woah! I just got back from the gym and your photo and recipe have awoken a Mac&cheese craving in me I haven't felt in YEARS!!! yummmm....

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Hey you! Long time no see! Have missed you much! :-)

This looks like a good recipe. I'm not a Velveeta person either, but I do make a rare exception to a good dish. Thanks for sharing.

Sending you big hugs. You should see North Florida. Sad... everything is dead as a doorknob.


Sheila :-)

Sue said...

I say her make this mac and cheese on televison once and it looked like heaven on a plate. I'm counting WW points right now, so you can imagine what seeing that goodness does to me today!

I don't buy Velveeta either, except for my Pitty Pat recipe and sometimes when I want to make the quick melt Velveeta with a jar of salsa recipe.


Skoots1moM said...

love the pic...
thanks for the recipe too
have a great week

Jay said...

I do like what you've done with the angel photo! It's always worth playing around in photoshop with a 'failed' shot, it's amazing how some can come to life with a little layering and filtering, and jiggling about with saturation etc. You did great!

If you want constructive criticism (not that I'm an expert) I'm wondering what that dark piece is behind the wing. I think I might have been tempted to clone it out to give a cleaner outline .. but that's subjective, and maybe just my taste. Overall, the picture is very creative, and I love the say you've desaturated the figure except for the key points!

Unknown said...

I saw her make that on Oprah! Gotta try it,now that I see the recipe in print.
Thanx much for that.

ellen b. said...

Whatever you did to change the orange version of the angel to the final result is brilliant! Have a great weekend...

Nancy said...

I think you did a fabulous job (honestly) and I'm completely jealous of your Photoshop skills (honestly)!
And those barking Border Collies...that's just wrong - they need a job and a new owner! xoxo Nancy

Positively Susan said...

That's what I love about you. Talent galore with some yummy goodness thrown in for good measure. Honestly Rhonda, I think the Angel is beautiful. I am still way back on Photoshop Elements.


Nancy said...

You really saved that photo. It looks great!

pam said...

Well done. I have a daughter who plays around with her images and I'm always surprised what she can do with them. Beauty indeed!

Tyler said...

ymmm cheese!

Unknown said...

CHEESY!!! and YUMMY!!! two words to look for when it comes to Mac n' Cheese.
Come by and visit so you can enter my GREAT!!! giveaway.

bunny, The Paris House Designs said...

Shellbelle, I must make this recipe, it looks soooo delicious. I too remember when this cookbook came out, but I don' have it. As for your angel photo I honestly think it is beautiful, what are your plans with it?? You can make it into a set of gift/greeting cards on shutterfly?? also a large framed version would be wonderful too. My son and I make greeting cards from a lot of his photography. I have been trying my photoshop elements for the past few days and am still learning, I have a long way to go.
Hope you are nice and warm and healthy in Sunny Florida sweet friend.

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Hey Rhonda
I love your angel.. in fact i have recently started to 'embrace' my orange photos too.. hahaha.. it is strange as I usually trash them also... it's clever how you kept the orange only where you wanted it...
I still need to get photoshop... arrgghhh.. one day

Have a great week and thanks for sharing you art with us.. xx Julie

Jen Beaudet Z said...

Your angel is lovely! I think you did a nice job.:) Macaroni and cheese is my all time favorite and is reserved for some serious times when comfort is needed! That looks yummy! Take care!-Jennifer:)

BonBon Rose Girls Kristin said...

OMG, that mac and cheese sounds beyond decadent. YUM!

Sierra said...

Beautiful artwork - you did a lovely job and I really must learn how to cook, but I believe I must say this every time, lol.

Michelle said...

Can you hear my stomach growling? Your recipe sounds delicious and made me Love your tiki hut blog rules...take off your shoes, get a cold drink, relax. Oh...yeah, I'll be back!

I love the beach and everything that goes with it! I love the waves lapping at my feet. I love the feel of the sand between my toes. I love the roar of the Pacific and the gentle waves of the Gulf of Mexico in Florida. Let's talk about beaches around the world, bonfires, building sandcastles, swaying palm trees, flamingos, clambakes, sunrises and sunsets. If it's tropical, it fits this blog!


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