My husband has to work late tonight, so I need a thrilling dinner for my two year old son, D. Dinner needs to be easy, quick and one of his favorites because I won’t have the down time I normally do in the evenings. As is probably the case with most two year olds, you can’t go wrong with good ole mac and cheese.
But let’s make it ‘thrilling’… just so I won’t have any issues getting him to the dinner table. Muffin macaroni is all the rage these days. I’ve never tried it but it looks easy enough? You just add an egg and a little sour cream and bake it in a muffin pan?
Inspiration struck… why not substitute a baking pan for a muffin pan and use a cookie cutter to make one of his favorite shapes? I pulled out the airplane cookie cutter and got to work (by work I mean making a super easy dinner in 45 minutes during nap time)! See below for the details and comment with questions or suggestions! Any thoughts on getting the mac and cheese to stay together even better?
Airplane Mac And Cheese – this is sure to make every (well, most every) 2 year old rush to the dinner table!
1. Gather your ingredients. You’ll need elbow macaroni, sour cream, milk, cheese (I used Colby jack and grated Parmesan simply because I didn’t have Velveeta on hand) , breadcrumbs (if you have them), an egg, salt/pepper, a pot, a baking pan and a cookie cutter (my happens to be an airplane design).
2. Cook macaroni according to package instructions. I salted the water slightly. Most of you are probably moms that cook mac & cheese as much as I do!
3. Add approximately 1/2 cup of milk, 1 tablespoon of sour cream, 1 egg and 1 cup of cheese (I used Colby Jack here) to drained pasta. Stir, and once combined, gently smooth onto baking pan.
4. Sprinkle bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese on top of macaroni. I didn’t have bread crumbs but think they’d make a great addition. I used the grated Parmesan pretty liberally! Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Cool completely.
5. Press your cookie cutter (I used an airplane design) into the baked pasta just like you would for cookies. I would suggest using a spatula underneath the mac to help you move it… spoon away enough mac and cheese around the cookie cutter to allow you to get the spatula underneath. The mac and cheese won’t stay together for more than one move (in my experience), so have your serving dish ready! That’s it! Eat and enjoy… be flexible as you’ll most likely have to reshape some of the designs. The airplane may have been a little complex of a design for mac and cheese but you get the idea!
Just to let you know, my son lit up with delight at having ‘Airplane Mac and Cheese‘. He ran to the bathroom to wash his hands, climbed up in his chair without prompting and asked for seconds and thirds. I’d say that was one successful dinner!