The Bad

Some days start out okay and then quickly take a turn for the worse. This morning started out like any other weekday other than I was driving in separately to work as my husband needed to stay late. As he left for work, I heard the garage door make a horrible grinding noise followed by exasperated grumbling as he came back in the front door. The garage door spring had sprung and we no longer had a working door. My car was stuck inside.

The Good

My job is flexible enough that I was able to arrange to telecommute. I sent my husband on his way promising to get it fixed. I called a few repair places and arranged to have someone come out and fix the door. I changed back into comfortable clothes, sat down in front of my computer and slogged through the day’s work. Working from home has some definite benefits. I can dress comfortably, my cats are around to keep me company and I can make my lunch.

The Yummy

I decided to try making a vegan version of Macaroni and Cheese. Mac and cheese has been a long time favorite since I was a kid and Kraft Deluxe was my version of heaven. One of my fondest childhood memories is a rainy day when I forgot my lunch and my mom showed up with a thermos full of warm macaroni and cheese made just for me.

Over the years, my tastes have matured and I now prefer homemade macaroni and cheese to the Kraft version. I’ve been trying to eat less dairy and have been using a vegan cheese called Daiya. It used to only be available to food distributors and restaurants. I was lucky enough to be able to find it at Mother’s Market who sold it through the deli. Daiya is now available in retail packages at many natural food stores. It doesn’t taste exactly like cheese in the same way that soy-milk doesn’t taste like cow’s milk. It does taste good, however, like soy-milk does after you stop expecting it to be cow’s milk. Daiya also melts beautifully, which makes it a great cheese substitute.

I used a traditional cheese sauce method by melting vegan butter and stirring in some flour to make a roux. I added a cup of soy-milk and stirred until thickened. I added a cup of Daiya cheddar style which melted perfectly. I then stirred in the elbow macaroni to make a really decent vegan mac and cheese. My lunch included some Gardien Crispy Tenders to have the ultimate vegan kids meal of mac and cheese and chicken strips, hold the cruelty and cholesterol.

Stove Top Vegan Macaroni and Cheese

  • 8 oz of elbow macaroni
  • 1 cup of Daiya cheddar style shreds
  • 1 cup of soy-milk
  • 2 tablespoons of Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Sticks
  • 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of dry mustard

Directions

Boil the macaroni according to the package directions in salted water. Drain and set aside. While the pasta is draining, melt the vegan butter in the same saucepan. Add the flour and stir until golden. Add the mustard and stir. Add the soy-milk and keep stirring until thickened. Turn off the heat and add the Daiya cheddar. Stir in the Daiya until it is fully incorporated. You should have a nice cheese sauce. Add the cooked macaroni and stir to combine. Enjoy!