We taped an episode of “Dinner and a Book” in the fall at WNIT, the area’s public television station based in South Bend.
Gail Martin hosts the excellent show that talks about literature and cooking.
I was surprised, but the episode aired at 10:30 a.m. this morning. To be honest, I thought it was supposed to air last week, but as much as I try to tell my mother when I’m going to be on television I was caught off guard.
Friends and colleagues let me know this morning that the episode was on and I tuned in.
It’s an odd thing to watch yourself on television. You wish you were skinnier, more comfortable and your hair looked better. But it was fun to see us having fun on the set.
The book this time was “The Pint Man” by Steve Rushin, a funny novel about a man and his love of pubs as he tries to navigate love with a woman. We cooked with beer. Summer Lewis from Iechyd Da Brewing Co. (and a former WNIT employee) was on as well talking about their Elkhart brewpub.
I’m not sure, but I think the episode will air again at 8:30 p.m. Monday on WNIT 34.2.
The description of the book and the recipes we used aren’t on the WNIT website yet, so here’s the recipe for the Beer Macaroni and Cheese I made from a site called How Sweet it Is.
Easy Beer Mac and Cheese
2 1/2 cups uncooked whole wheat elbow noodles
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
8 ounces milk
8 ounces beer (I used an amber beer – it was what I had on hand)
8 ounces freshly grated cheddar cheese
4 ounces freshly grated parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
pinch of black pepper
pinch of nutmeg
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
10 large basil leaves, chopped for garnish
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Prepare water for pasta and boil according to directions, shaving 1-2 minutes off of cooking time since pasta will continue to cook in the oven.
Heat a saucepan over medium high heat and add butter. Once melted and sizzling, whisk in flour to create a roux and cook until bubbly and golden in color, about 2 minutes. Add milk and beer into saucepan whisking constantly, then add cheeses and stir until melted. Turn heat down to medium and continue to stir, cooking for 5-6 minutes while mixture thickens. It will most likely NOT thicken like regular mac and cheese because of the beer, but you want it to thicken a little bit. Stir in pepper, paprika and nutmeg.
Add noodles (once cooked and drained) to a casserole dish, then pour cheese over top, mixing gently to combine. Top with panko bread crumbs and an additional sprinkle of cheese if desired. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until bubbly and golden on top.
Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes, then top with fresh basil.