Baked macaroni for a Halloween party

Halloween came early in our neighborhood. Probably because no one’s sure if October 31 would be declared a non-working holiday, a Halloween party was organized for October 26 and kids went on their trick or treat earlier today. Baked macaroni with creamy cheese topping

But even before the trick or treat, there was a party at the clubhouse and everyone brought food, potluck style. I cooked a tray of baked macaroni with creamy cheese topping using a different technique for making the topping. Even something so very good can be made better still. How?

I prepared the white sauce the usual way but did not stir in the cheese. Instead, after pouring the white sauce over the macaroni, I grated mild cheddar cheese directly over it. It looked great, I tell you, because the orange-colored cheddar cheese contrasted wonderfully with the whiteness of the sauce. And, during baking, the red sauce bubbled over portions of the white sauce, creating reddish patterns on the surface. You might want to try it next time you make a tray of baked mac.

And is that all that this new entry has to offer? No, I have something more for you. See, every year, when I celebrate my birthday, it’s like Christmas is just around the corner. My birthday (I had my party on October 18) always starts off a string of parties and get-togethers that last until January 26 when my younger daughter, Alex, celebrates her birthday. There’s my birthday, then Halloween, then my brother’s birthday… Then, it’s December and our wedding anniversary and, soon after that, it’s Christmas.

That means a lot of party cooking and, ergo, a lot of recipes that are good ideas for Christmas and the New Year. So I started updating the Noche Buena blog. There are two new recipes there — chili garlic prawns, and blueberries and cream. Check them out. After all, when is it ever too early to start planning what to cook for the holidays?

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