Cooking / Mains / Recipe Index / Sides

BBQ + Mac & Cheese

After a busy weekend running around at all the wedding festivities, I really just wanted to spend Sunday evening at home.  I could cook a real meal, watch True Blood, and go to sleep early.  Since Albert agreed to my request to stay in, I decided to make him something I knew he would enjoy for supper: BBQ.  For a yankee, that boy sure does love his BBQ.  I happen to love it as well (duh, I actually am Southern) so it really wasn’t much of a compromise on my end.

When I want BBQ and I want it now I have one go-to tactic: throw it in the crockpot.  After four hours on high with a bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce, pork tenderloin turns into beautiful pulled pork.  Make your own sauce if you are so inclined, but I keep it simple and just pour in a bottle of Johnny’s.  Johnny Harris is an old Savannah restaurant that my family has been going to for generations.  My grandparents used to go there on dates.  No joke.  I could go on about their amazing food and my family’s connection to the restaurant…but for now I’m just going to say how much I love their sauce.  At home you can buy it in all the grocery stores.  In NYC…no such luck.  So I have several bottles shipped to me at a time.  Just as some people make sure to always have a bottle of champagne chilling for impromptu celebrations, I was raised to always have a bottle of BBQ sauce in my fridge.  I’m not going to let something as silly as distance keep me from keeping my fridge stocked.  This is the internet age – I really have no excuse.

Mac and cheese is a tried and true BBQ side dish.  I make mine just like my Mom: elbow macaroni layered with shredded sharp cheddar (must be off the block – none of that bagged nonsense), and an egg/milk mixture around the edges.  Into the oven it goes at 350 for about 40 minutes.  I tried to mix things up by creating a crust with panko bread crumbs and melted butter.  It was good but unnecessary.  If my Mom has been told over and over (and over) again that she makes the best mac [ever] and she doesn’t use bread crumbs then I don’t need them either.

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