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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Serving Size : 10

4 c macaroni
10 c water
4 c mixed vegetables, frozen
2 tbsps butter
2 tbsps flour
1/2 tsp salt
dash pepper
2 c milk, 1% lowfat
4 c cheddar cheese -- grated
1 tomato -- sliced
10 saltine crackers -- crushed
sprig parsley

Bring water to boil. Add macaroni and vegetables. Bring to boil, simmer 10 minutes, or till macaroni cooked. Drain.

Melt butter in saucepan. Add flour, salt and pepper and stir. Gradually add milk. Heat till thick and bubbling. Take off heat and stir in 3 c. grated cheese.

Mix cheese sauce into macaroni mixture. Top with crushed crackers. Top with remaining grated cheddar. Arrange tomato slices on top. Garnish with parsley sprigs.

Bake in oven at 350 F for about 30 minutes, uncovered.

Cuisine: "Low Fat"

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 447 Calories; 19g Fat (38.5% calories from fat); 21g Protein; 48g Carbohydrate; 4g Dietary Fiber; 56mg Cholesterol; 521mg Sodium. Exchanges: 2 Grain(Starch); 1 1/2 Lean Meat; 2 Vegetable; 0 Non-Fat Milk; 2 1/2 Fat.

Serving Ideas : Serve with a green leafy salad.

NOTES : For a non-vegetarian meal, add 6 chopped up hot dogs to the pot when you put on the vegetables and macaroni to cook.

Frugal Tips:
~ Buy pasta on sale and stockpile!
~ Buy mixed vegetables frozen on sale and stockpile in freezer. A can of vegetables (2 c) is 50 cents on sale here. A kg (2.2 lbs. = ~ 10 c) frozen is $2.33...or (23 cents/c). And frozen doesn't have salt and all the preservatives of canned.
~ The big expense in this recipe is the cheese. We like lots of cheese in our mac and cheese. You might be able to get buy with less if you use a sharper cheese. I buy cheese on sale and make this dish then. I don't like the texture of frozen cheese, but some people freeze it and don't mind.
~ You need a fresh tomato to slice for the top of this dish.
~ I buy crackers/saltines on sale too. I've tried making them, without much success I might add. It can be done though!
~ Parsley grows well in a windowsill garden. Or, alternatively, buy a bunch and stick it in a glass of water on the counter to keep fresh longer.
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