About Me

Here at Sensei Cooks I write about my adventures in the kitchen and sometimes in the dojo.

I have a love for cooking and want to explore all the possible facets of it. Leave no stone unturned so to speak.

I am Vegan and love all types of vegan cooking.

I love the process of cooking. Being in the moment. Sort of Zen and the Art of Cooking.

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Pasta and Cheddar Cheese Sauce

I have found myself starting to make recipes I have already blogged about. I need to break out of my safety zone and go crazy. Well actually we have been trying to work through our freezers and fridges so I end up making things that I know because we have the same ingredients. We have a fridge in the kitchen with a bottom freezer – you never know what is in these. Probably a mistake to buy unless you make a list of everything you put into it, otherwise you have to empty the whole thing just to see what you do or don’t have. We have our old fridge (with a top freezer) in the other room along with a stand-up freezer. Way to much space to fill up.

We shop a lot at Costco so when I buy fish, it is a large bag of frozen fish or a very large fresh salmon etc and we end up freezing half of it. Good, but if you don’t eat it it just ends up with freezer burn and you throw it out. Big waste of money. So I have been slowly working my way through all three appliances and have cut my shopping lists down to the essentials. Although that does mean cooking the same old, same old. Hey, but that’s what everyone likes so it is not a bad thing just doesn’t give me something new to blog about.

Last night I made Steven Raichlen’s (The Barbeque Bible) Shark and Bakes on my new little kettle charcoal BBQ, along with a strip-loin steak for Belle. The breads (Bakes) turned out great and the shark was delicious but the strip-loin smelled and tasted of BBQ lighter fuel. I did something wrong. I need to start the BBQ a lot earlier.  I have not used charcoal in many, many years so this was a “new” experience. Sorry I spoiled a strip-loin steak though. I also made her fried mushrooms and we both had the Classic Thai Rice (“Seductions of Rice” by Jeffrey Alford & Naomi Duguid).


Bakes off the BBQ

Here is one Belle found on-line or was sent to her….

Dylan’s favourite, Mac Cheese.

Pasta and Cheddar Cheese Sauce
adapted from http://sculptingalife.blogspot.com

2 cups uncooked pasta (I used elbow macaroni)
salted water to cook the pasta
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese
3/4 cup grated cheddar cheese for topping

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Boil the water , add the pasta when boiling and cook as per the instructions on the package.
    (I usually ignore the package, set the timer for 7 minutes and then taste it , add another minute or two and taste etc until al dente)
  3. Now make your roux:
  4. Melt the butter over medium heat and add the flour(slowly) and whisk it until smooth and starting to colour.
  5. Add the milk, slowly and continue to whisk until completely smooth.
  6. Add the cheese, whisk until smooth then remove from the heat.
  7. Drain the pasta, and pour into a casserole dish.
  8. Pour in the Cheese sauce and mix it up until smooth.
  9. Add the 3/4 cup cheese on top and bake for 10 minutes.
  10. Remove and serve.
  11. Yummy!!!
  12. This is a crowd pleaser, Sean, Hayley and Dylan love this and the leftovers can easily be nuked back to a soft, smooth meal.

Experiment with the type of cheese ( I can’t because Dylan would complain) but you can so try anything and everything. Also vary the type of pasta you use.

This is a new “Staple” in our house.

Macaroni and Cheese

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2 comments to Pasta and Cheddar Cheese Sauce

  • This looks really good, can’t beat cheddar, but it would be nice to try it with some gouda, or fontina. I also know what it’s like to make what the kid likes:) For the longest time I could only make salmon with Goya’s Mojo Marinade. At least I knew she would eat it.

    I use a charcoal chimney to start my coals, no lighter fluid or quick start charcoal. It’s easy, but you do have to give it a little time.


  • Ward

    I have made a chimney (actually two small ones with cans) but I am going to buy a large apple juice can and use that. Last night’s striploin was perfect!!! More on that in my next post
    thanks Lyndsey. as usual!!!


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