May is National Barbecue Month, so I thought it would be fun to share ways to become a kid cook.
I actually have my own barbecue setup thanks to the Big Green Egg. My parents cook on the large smoker, and I have the MiniMax, sized perfectly for culinary-loving kids.
The Egg grills, roasts, smokes, and bakes. It can make pizza, burgers, and even tacos for Taco Tuesday! It’s also safe to use because the outer ceramic surface protects your hands from getting burnt. You will need adult assistance to light the charcoal, but after learning basic grill skills, you’ll become the pro kid chef! Plus, it’s totally fun cooking as a family and creating delicious meals together.
Here’s one of my favorite recipes because my brothers and I love Mac & Cheese.
Mac + Cheese on the Big Green Egg
4 tbsp unsalted butter
4 tbsp all-purpose flour
1 tsp dry mustard
1 tbsp Sweet & Smoky Seasoning
1 tsp kosher salt
1⁄2 tsp ground black pepper
3 cups heavy cream
2 cups whole milk
4 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded gruyere cheese
1 cup shredded gouda cheese
1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 pound of macaroni cooked al dente
Set the EGG for direct cooking without the convEGGtor at 350oF/177oC; add the cast iron skillet to the EGG to preheat.
Melt the butter in the cast iron skillet. Add the flour and, using a whisk and stirring, cook for 2 minutes. Continue stirring as you add the dry mustard, seasoning, salt, and pepper and cook for 3 minutes. Slowly add the cream and milk and continue cooking, stirring constantly, for 8 minutes (until the sauce bubbles slightly- but don’t let it boil).
Remove the skillet from the EGG and add 3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese, 1 cup gruyere, 1 cup gouda, and 1 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses to the sauce. Stir until the cheese is melted. Add the pasta to the cast iron skillet and fold it into the sauce.
Set the EGG for indirect cooking with the convEGGtor at 300oF/177oC.
Add 1 cup of shredded sharp cheddar cheese to the top of the mac & cheese. Place the cast iron skillet in the EGG and smoke for 1 hour. Remove the mac & cheese once the top cheese is melted and bubbly. Eat and enjoy!