Happy Mother’s Day & Cooking for a Junior Girl Scout Cook Badge

Happy Mother’s Day! I wish all of the mom’s out there a beautiful and relaxing day. ❀ While Mr. BrookCook and my kids take care of me and the cooking today, I have time to share a special mother-daughter cooking project.

In order to earn a Junior Girl Scout Cook Badge, my daughter (with my help) had to cook a complete breakfast, a healthy dinner, and a delicious dessert. Understandably, she wanted to make meals that she wanted to eat! This was actually a great opportunity for her as she is harder to please when menu planning. It was a lesson in itself to see how much time and work is required to put together an entire meal. πŸ™‚

We made Blueberry Cornmeal Muffins for breakfast with fruit salad on the side. She loved cutting all of the fruit herself. For the “healthy” dinner, she prepared a No-Boil Macaroni and Cheese (recipe below) with Simple Caesar Salad. Healthy enough, right? She loved it so much we have already made it again.

We made a Lemon Meringue Pie, using a store-bought pie crust, for dessert. Not only did she make the pie, she typed out the recipe to share with her Girl Scout Troop. A big project! She did a great job and I was very proud of her. I hope that she continues to enjoy cooking more and more in the future. ❀

No-Boil Macaroni & Cheese (adapted from Bon Appetit)

Yield: 8 Servings

For the Pasta:

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1Β T coarseΒ salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or more, to taste
  • 1 pound elbow macaroni
  • 2 cups shredded extra-sharp white cheddar, divided

For the Topping:

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 2 T chopped flat-leaf parsley
  1. Preheat oven to 400Β°, preferably on convection.
  2. Melt 1/4 cup butter in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.
  3. Add flour; cook, whisking constantly, for 1 minute.
  4. Whisk in milk and 3 cups water.
  5. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook, whisking often, until a very thin, glossy sauce forms, about 10 minutes.
  6. Stir in 1 tablespoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Remove sauce from heat.
  7. Toss pasta and 1 1/2 cups cheese in a 13x9x2-inch or other shallow 3-quart baking dish. Place on a rimmed baking sheet.
  8. Pour sauce over (pasta should be submerged; do not stir) and cover with foil.
  9. Bake until pasta is almost tender, about 20 minutes.

For the Topping:

  1. Melt remaining 1/4 cup butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add garlic, panko, and parsley and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.

To Finish the Dish:

  1. Remove foil from dish. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese, then panko mixture.
  2. Bake until pasta is tender, edges are bubbling, and top is golden brown, about 10 minutes longer.
  3. Let sit 10 minutes before serving.

Two Years Ago:

Three Years Ago:

Four Years Ago:

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About Josette@thebrookcook

I live in Stony Brook, New York on Long Island. I love garlic and baking. My hobby (and love) is to try new recipes. My favorite recipe resources include The New York Times, Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, and Martha Stewart Living. Enjoy!

13 responses to “Happy Mother’s Day & Cooking for a Junior Girl Scout Cook Badge

  1. This is nice πŸ˜€ I did some cooking with Ben last summer for an award he was working towards; it was lovely to cook with him and show him how to make the things he likes. I think it was a revelation to him too just how long things take to make though. They see these cooking programmes we have on and assume that they show how long things really do take to make – I had to explain about editing…!

    • A “revelation” is the absolute perfect word to describe the reaction to the time involved in preparing an entire meal. I knew that she would be completely overwhelmed doing all of this cooking in one day so we spread it out over several days. I did all of the clean up too! Still, a pretty good job for a 10 year old. πŸ™‚

      • An excellent job! I made Ben clean up after himself (but I did then have to go round afterwards and clean down all the surfaces again, but he doesn’t know that!!!)
        Maybe this is why so many people (in the uk anyway) watch more cookery shows than actually cook at home, because the actual effort required is such a shock to the system?!

  2. Kudos to your daughter for getting in the kitchen and putting in so much hard work! I started my blog for my daughter so she could cook when she heads off to college. She doesn’t have a single desire to cook, lol. I tried many times over the years to entice her into the kitchen to help cook a meal. I hope your daughter’s enthusiasm continues!

  3. It all looks so lovely. Its so nice that you guys can share your love of cooking.

  4. It’s so important that children learn to cook and it’s great together time too!

    • I agree that they really need to learn to cook- it’s such an important life skill. I really should have both of my kids cook with me more often! They need to learn how to do the dishes too… right now we’re working on emptying the dishwasher. πŸ˜‰

      • My mom used to tell me all the time to watch her cook and I didn’t as much as she liked but I still learned and remembered a lot from her cooking growing up. Luckily, I inherited some of her cooking talent.

  5. Looks delicious!!! I’m liking your feed. Can you cook for me?!?! Lol

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