A couple of days ago, I came across an interesting article in the newspaper.“Photo Controversy Highlights Black Women in Long Gray Line”looked at the uproar over 16 black women graduates of West Point, holding proud fists in the air. The article went on to discuss the overall presence of black women in the military, something very rarely talked about despite black women making up a large percentageof people of color serving our country.
The article gave insight into the homogenized world of the military and the fact that black women often must navigate double oppressions in a white male dominated space (racism and sexism).
As we approach Memorial Day, I thought the article showed the importance of giving homage to black women in the military. It has been noted that the first Memorial Day was started by former slaves. These women are a reminder that black folks have always held respect for soldiers, although we tend to be portrayed as anti-America. Besides Native/Indigenous folks, Black people are America. Majority of black folks like America, we just hate the white supremacy, racism, and anti-blackness that comes along with it. We tend to be oppressed in a country that demands our loyalty, but offers none in return.
Today kicks off the Memorial Day weekend. Memorial Day is this Monday, May 26th:
“Memorial Day is a US federal holiday wherein the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces are remembered. The holiday, which is celebrated every year on the final Monday of May, was formerly known as Decoration Day and originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War. By the 20th century, Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military service. It typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.”
The Memorial Day weekend is an opportunity for folks to enjoy three/four days off from work/school with friends and family. It’s also a big cooking weekend. I know I am missing my southern folks, right about now. On my dad’s side, we have a lot of family members who have served in the military. This tends to be a big weekend for them. They get together and reminisce and light up those grills! I can just imagine all the delicious BBQ being made this weekend 🙂
Any who, I thought this was a good time to share another recipe. I love southern baked mac & cheese. It’s a good side dish for parties/celebrations. I am known for my mac & cheese. It’s usually requested for summer gatherings. Actually, I just made it last week for a potluck meeting:
Now (hee,hee) I am not going to share MY recipe. It’s a secret. But I did find one on the ‘net that sounds pretty good. Enjoy and have a nice weekend!
3 cups macaroni, uncooked
½ cup heavy cream
1½ cups milk
salt & pepper
1 cup smoked cheddar cheese, shredded (a must)
6-8 oz. velvetta, shredded (feel free to cut back on the velvetta if you don’t want it to be super creamy)
1 cup sharp cheddar (can use less if you don’t like a sharp taste in your mac n cheese)
1 cup colby & monteray jack, shredded (cheese blend)
Preheat oven to 350
Cook macaroni until just al dente or a little under al dente. (Look on the back of the box to see how long you need to cook your pasta for it to reach al dente.) Be careful no to overcook.
Drain pasta and set aside.
In a large bowl, add milk, heavy cream & cheeses (except for the smoked cheddar).
Stir to combine.
Taste the milk mixture and add salt & pepper until it has a good taste. You can also add in other seasonings like onion, paprika, etc. Tasting will help avoid having a plain, bland bake macaroni & cheese. Yuck!
When you are content with the taste, add in the eggs.
Stir well until combined.
Butter a 9 x 9 inch baking dish.
Add macaroni to the baking dish.
Pour cheese mixture over macaroni.
Make sure the cheese distributed well.
Top with smoked cheddar cheese. (I add a little more Colby jack as well.) Sprinkle with paprika and/or black pepper, if desired.
Bake for 35-45 minutes. Do not overbake. It may be a bit jiggly when you take it out of the oven. It will firm up as it cool.
Let cool for about 10-15 minutes or until fully set.