Giving the Gift of Macaroni and Cheese
Mac and cheese as a gift? Why in the world not? I wanted to make something homemade, something truly made with love for those special folks who I call friends. And because it is the holidays, I wanted it to be decadent and shareable - that means a velvety, luscious cheese sauce and generous portions. Which led me to one of my stand-by recipes, Beecher's World's Best Mac & Cheese.
Looking for a last-minute gift? Here you go. Homemade mac and cheese, made with love, to be given to your best and closest friends. For the full recipe, check out the Beecher's link above. I decided that quart-sized Mason jars would be the ideal vehicle for my mac and cheese gifts. I love that you can dress them up and customize them to be infinitely festive, yet they're reusable and recyclable.
I decided to order some custom labels and some Ho Ho Ho ribbon and Santa bags.
Since I was making eight quarts of macaroni and cheese, I went with several pasta types, among them penne and gemelli.
And even though I am not going to go through the recipe in this post, here's a glorious cheese shot. Because ultimately, it's always all about the cheese. At least for me.
After I made the mac and cheese, I had a bit of a conundrum: how to get the macaroni and cheese into the Mason jars without making too much of a mess? Especially since I'd already added my labels? Huh.
I ended up using a thin strip of foil to line the mouth of the jar, then another foil "cape" to surround the outside of the jar. Not the most glamorous look, but it was quite effective!
I set them on the counter to cool for a while, then capped them and popped them into the refrigerator.
The next morning, I decorated them by adding the Ho Ho Ho ribbon around the top, tying each into a nice bow.
Then I lined the Santa bags with red tissue paper and gently slid each Mason jar into a Santa bag.
Here they are, ready to be hand-delivered!
And the best part? I had just enough left over to make a nice lunch for myself. Score!
Merry Christmas, everyone.