Sunday, July 29, 2012

Boston Vacation...and a Mac n' Cheese Project

So I had the pleasure of going to a city where I have always, always, ALWAYS wanted to go this past weekend. Boston!! This city is amazing, there is so much history and culture in this city it's is impossible to see everything in just a few short days. Trust me, I tried and I saw so much, yet I know I could have easily spent another 4 days there and then would....possibly be sort of close to seeing everything. I went with my dad and step-mom and my step-brother. I haven't walked that much in so long. My legs right now hurt, and even after my 3 hour nap when I got home today, I'm still exhausted. Work will be fun tomorrow.

I was so excited when my dad said we would be going to Boston for a few days, and even more excited once I got there and saw the city, saw all the possibilities of all the historical sites to see and things to do. Ahh I was in heaven! Loved that the hotel we stayed at was right across the street from the Boston Public Library, I love books. I just wanted to share some of the pictures from Boston...before I get down to business on a task I've set for myself.

This is the Charles River and a glance at Cambridge

Boston Public Library in the rain, from the front of my hotel

The Charles River and some sail boats

Probably my favorite bridge, it's the Longfellow Bridge, but it's called the Salt and Pepper Bridge

This is the Fairmont Hotel at Copley Plaza, oldest hotel in Boston and where I stayed

Red Sox were on an away game streak but we watched a soccer game here. The  park is amazing

I'm a huge hockey fan, it's where the Bruins play. I wished it was hockey season the entire time I was there. 

Not big on churches, but Trinity Church is beautiful.

 So what does this have to do with cooking? Well, absolutely nothing but I wanted to share a few pictures. This is the part that has to do with cooking though. While out to lunch with my step-brother, he ordered this amazing looking Mac n' Cheese. It was super cheesy, and had bacon bits and diced tomatoes in it, all baked together with a crunchy topping crust in a little cast iron skillet. While he was eating it he mentioned that I should figure out how to make something like this...or exactly this. So I thought to myself, "challenge accepted!"

So here I go, I'm going to be working on figuring out this Mac n' Cheese creation...from only tasting it once and not having access to it. Impossible right? Well maybe not, I don't need to make an EXACT replica, but I think I got the basic of what's in it. And of course, I'm going to put my own spin on it and hopefully it will turn out well. I need to brainstorm so I know where to start. So here I get a glance into my thought process.

I'm going to start with the basics. The pasta, it was a simple elbow macaroni. OK easy I can cook some elbow macaroni pasta. Seems simple enough right?

OK so that was the easy part. Now I need to figure out what kinds of cheeses were used...or more what kind of cheeses my step-brother wants used in this replication. I'm going to use multiple cheeses, obviously. So I think I'll start with...

Cheddar--can't go wrong. It's delicious and will help with the coloring
Parmesan---definitely going to put some freshly grated parm on the top it should brown nicely and help get that crunch that was on top of the mac n cheese.

...going to be honest I'm drawing a blank. My mind is jet-lagged and now I just want to go make normal mac n cheese. This is going to take some work, I know there were at least 4 or 5 cheeses in there because that's what was in the description. I'm going to consider it a work in progress.

I know I'm going to need milk or cream, something to keep it nice moist and creamy...and delicious above all.

Spices are going to be tricky too, well maybe not. I'm going to use garlic powder and some onion powder for sure, and then I'll go with my gut, see what tastes good. I do know there was from fresh parsley throughout it, because I saw it clearly in the dish. I also know it was topped with bread crumbs, what kind? I have no idea...maybe I'll try to make my own, add some flavor to plain bread crumbs or something.

Ok well it looks like I got my work cut out for me. I can't wait to get back in the kitchen! I'll probably be in the kitchen tomorrow or some other time this week which means I'll have a new post up later this week! Woohoo!!

I'll leave you with a few more views of Boston. Love the buildings and the old architecture.

It's just so pretty there. I want to go back.

Fenway Park from 50 stories up at the Skywalk Observatory

'Til Next Time!!

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