Comfy and cheesy

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not a fan of winter. On the East Coast it means chilly weather, the sun setting before I even have dinner and ick – snow.  And once Christmas is over, it can get downright depressing.
Thankfully, comfort food can cheer up any winter day.  It warms the soul and stomach.  Normally, I try to limit my intake of comfort foods but when my Food Network Magazine arrived yesterday and I ripped it open to find…
Mac and Cheese Soup!
A “light family dinner”, I was pumped! ecstatic! and hungry.  Bring on the comfort food.
You will need:
•1 cup elbow noodles, dry
•cooking spray
•a handful of plum tomatoes
•3 shallots (I used a small yellow onion)
•1 carrot, shredded
•1 celery stalk, shredded
•1/4 cup flour
•3 3/4 cup chicken broth
•1 1/4 cup milk (I used 1%)
•6 ounces shredded cheese
•1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1. Preheat oven to 450°  Cut tomatoes in half, place on baking sheet, spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt.  When oven is heated, put tomatoes in until they are roasted about 10 minutes.
2. Cook pasta according to directions.
3. Put carrot, celery and onion in food processor until finely minced.  The recipe said to put these items in the processor roughly chopped but I shredded mine first.  Add vegetables to a pan and spray with cooking spray.  Cook until soft about 4-5 minutes.  Add flour and cook while stirring for about 2 minutes.  Gradually stir in broth and bring to a boil; cook, stirring, until thickened for about 6-7 minutes.  Remove from heat.
4. Add milk, cheeses and noodles.  Stir until cheese melts and becomes thicker.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Top with tomato.
To say that this soup is delicious is an understatement!  It was so creamy and decadent but without the guilt.
And it was different, unlike any soup or mac and cheese I’ve ever had!  I like different :)
Here are the stats to prove its worthiness:
Calories: 476 Fat: 20g Cholesterol: 84mg Sodium: 636 mg Carbs: 46g Fiber: 2g Protein: 27g
Paired with a salad, this is a great, filling and satisfying meal!
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