I had a really funny idea last week, and Mandi and I tried it out over the weekend. I think these would be a neat finger food to pass around at a party. The cool thing is you can make them way ahead of time, so it frees you up to just reheat at the party. I like the idea of foods that look fancy, but are really something that everyone is familiar with.
Good old blue box mac and cheese.
If you make boxed mac and cheese once a week like I do, you know that 2 boxes = half cup milk, half cup butter. To make it sticky to hold up like sushi rice, you need to add an extra ¼ cup or so of both ingredients.
Cook the pasta for only 4 or so minutes. You dont want it quite fully cooked, but almost there. Strain it out and put it back in the pan at a low heat. Add in the butter, milk, and good old cheese packets. Feel free to add a handful of any other cheese at this point to dress up your mock-i rolls. Stir and heat this on low for about 10 more minutes until it's dry and sticky.
Look how sticky it is! This is what you want. Take this off the heat and leave it for about an hour to come to room temperature.
Take your sushi roller and cover it in plastic wrap. Take your time at this step and it will be easier to roll.
Now you just go ahead and make your sushi.
This is some taco meat we had left over from Thursday (It was the weekend after all). You can always just use seasoned ground beef. Dry this real good because extra moisture is not your friend in this mock-i roll.
Sriracha is the best with boxed mac and cheese. I have said it before and I will say it again. From a mountaintop.
I packed a little too much mac and cheese into the first try.
Looks good right? But you can't just cut it like this. Instead, as you unroll it, leave the plastic wrap on it.
See? Like this. Make sure this is nice and tight!
Throw this into the freezer for an hour and a half to 2 hours. You don't want it frozen solid, but you do want it pretty tight and frosty.
There ya go! The reason you have to freeze it is because if you don't, when you cut it it will fall apart.
These things still crack me up and I have looked at these pictures 15 times since last weekend.
Lay them out on the serving tray still ice cold. At this point, you can leave them on the counter for a few hours, or even put them in the fridge. When you are ready to use them, put the whole tray into the oven at its lowest setting. They only need 5 to 7 minutes. You don't want them to be hot, but they should be slightly warmer than room temperature. If you leave them in the oven too long, they may become fragile to pick up! So be careful.
Garnish with some more sriracha and serve!
It was our first time making them, so they were SLIGHTLY too fragile to pick up with chopsticks. I feel confident that if I made them again though I could make them stronger. I would use the same method but probably put some cheddar in to melt and then firm up. I would also cook them less in the boiling water so more of the starch got into the mix with the cheese packets. One option I did not want to do but would probably help, is to beat an egg and pour it into the mac and cheese when it is at room temp before rolling. Then when you put them in the oven later, you would have to bake them longer to be sure the egg was cooked and set, but it probably would firm up enough to seal these more.
These were definitely fine to pick up with your fingers though! They tasted exactly how they look. Like mac and cheese with ground beef and sriracha!