Tonight was macaroni pie.
It's a meal my mother served me and my family. She and my dad spent 25 years going back and forth from Barbados. It's a place they consider another home. They have stories of beach lunches with the families of friends, of buffets and of restaurant meals where macaroni pie was a side dish.
Hot sauce was a requirement.
When I cook pasta it's with sauce, veggies and several forms of cheese. That's my simple and happy meal, a quick and aromatic dinner every one will eat.
Macaroni pie is only slightly more complicated. To make it authentic, you need long tubes of pasta. It would work with any kind of pasta, I suppose, but you want the tubes.
I found my recipe on-line at totallybarbados.com It's your basic mac-and-cheese recipe. The noodles make the difference. Make sure you have enough bread crumbs to top it and extra cheese for the surface.
Kids are going to want the gooey stuff. They don't care that the milk, egg and cheese are healthy. They want cheese.
I made a butter lettuce and mandarin orange salad.
Again, I cook for comfort. I need warm. I need easy. I need an easy combination of tastes and textures that the pickiest eater will approve. That's what moms do, right?