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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Macaroni & Cheese: Amy's vs. Stouffer's

For as long as I can recall, macaroni and cheese has been my go-to comfort food. Unfortunately my artistic skills do not extend to the culinary arts. I've tried just about every boxed and/or frozen mac' and cheese available.

Rice Mac & Cheese from Amy's Kitchen is the best I've found by far. Made with organic, gluten-free rice pasta and real cheddar cheese, it's become a regular in my freezer. I'm not restricted to a gluten-free diet, but have found that rice pasta is quite tender and more filling than traditional pasta. Amy's sauce is rich and cheesy, as any comfort food should be.

Compared with Stouffer's frozen Macaroni & Cheese, Amy's is both better tasting and a bit healthier, with much less sodium as well as more protein and iron per serving. As you can see below, Amy's and Stouffer's have the same amount of fat per serving, but Amy's serving size is larger. Neither product contains preservatives or trans fat. Amy's clearly has twice the cholesterol of Stouffer's, but still considerably less than that of a single large egg yolk.

Amy's Kitchen Rice Macaroni & Cheese

Stouffer's Macaroni & Cheese

I recommend Amy's Rice Mac & Cheese to all, not just to those with gluten-free diets. And for vegans, Amy's offers a gluten-free Rice Macaroni with Non-Dairy Soy Cheeze.  

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Beers of My Dreams

My apologies, I've been neglecting the blog. My wallet is a bit lacking these days; so, instead of reviews, here are a couple of brews I'd love to try.

As you may know by now, stout is my favorite style of beer. Flavored stouts, in particular, please my palate. Tampa's Cigar City Brewing released this year's Hunahpu Mayan Chocolate Imperial Stout just last month. It's described on the label as "stout aged on Peruvian cacao nibs, ancho and pasilla chiles, cinnamon, and Madagascar vanilla beans." I'd love to pair Hunahpu with a big slab of barbecue ribs. Only 3000 bottles were released. Maybe next year.   

While canned beer is not always my first choice, Mana Wheat from Maui Brewing Co. sounds like the perfect brew for a day at the beach. I'm a huge fan of hefeweizen, unfiltered Wheat beer, and this one is infused with pineapple. Yes, please! Does anyone know where I can find this on the Gulf Coast? 

Friday, April 1, 2011

Pretty Packaging

Odell Brewing Company recently unveiled new packaging for their Double Pilsner. I know not to judge a beer by its label, but the artist in me can't ignore this folksy Bohemian design; so, just this once, I'd like to raise a glass to pretty packaging.

At the very top of my list of beautifully labeled brews is Left Hand Brewing Company's entire lineup. From the ever-popular Milk Stout to the seasonal Oktoberfest, each of their beers features a magnificent little work of art from Moxie Sozo design and advertising agency in Boulder, Colorado.