the grumbles cooks the pioneer woman- i'm getting all domestic up in here lately

February 11, 2010

ok, i didn't really cook her.  i don't even know her.  but we did cook one of her recipes a few days ago. these days the pioneer woman is nearly as famous as dooce, but i've only just found her.  jon isn't too impressed but, me, ME i am so impressed.  i love her photos from the ranch she lives on.  i love her photos of, well, everything. and i love her section of the site for recipes complete with photo instructions.  (if you don't know about the pioneer woman yet, you should.  go ahead.  i'll wait.  i'll even trust you to come back here some day.)

we chose as our first pioneer woman extravaganza... fancy macaroni.  the recipe is here.  macaroni sounded like a safe choice; you can't go wrong with pasta and cheese.  we had planned ahead of time to make it some time during the week and then surprise! some friends of ours called and asked what we were up to.  nothing really, about to make fancy macaroni.  so we invited them over to join us for an impromptu dinner party which turned out to be a great choice since the recipe serves TWELVE.  i probably should have looked at that ahead of time. the grumbles, ftw!

fancy macaroni phase one!

but the best part of the fancy macaroni?  bacon.  and onions. and fancy cheeses.  all cooked with... the bacon grease.

i'm not on a diet, can you tell?

the wine shown was purely for socializing, not for cooking. and i've decided- we need a new cheese grater. i was standing there grating that stupid delicious cheese for WAAYYY too long.  box grater, here i come. plus we discovered our new stainless stock pot (below) is oven friendly. score!

fancy macaroni phase two!

my only comments- compared to her bacon our bacon created much, much, much more grease.  and she said to use it all, so we did.  but if i could go back in time i would use maybe half the bacon grease.  i know this is blasphemy because bacon is awesome but it was a little too... bacony all over for my taste.  and oily.  jon also mentioned he would have liked to brown the onions a little more than we did (shown above). and i might (this is just me spitballing here) add in the bacon AFTER everything is done cooking in the oven as a crumbly delicious topping.  it would have been nice if the bacon was crunchier to add some variety.  then again, if you're going to put the bacon on at the end maybe leave all the grease IN.  just some thoughts.

mmmmm, the fancy macaroni.  i'd highly recommend it.  we served it with garlic bread and fresh greens with jon's homemade balsamic vinaigrette dressing.  it was definetly a success- it would make an excellent holiday side dish.  we'll be attempting more pioneer woman recipes that i hope to share with you in the future.  we've already tried the sesame noodles, lettuce wraps, chocolate chip cookies, and her super easy homemade salsa.  but especially the short ribs, god, i want to try the braised short ribs.


Iris Took

That sounds like the perfect winter food. What movie was playing from the MCC?


Oh yeah - I discovered her, spent an entire day reading her love story, and am obsessed with her recipes (i have the cook book!) and photos. Step by step instructions are the BOMB. I have NEVER made a recipe from her site that me and hubby didn't love.

You just made me CRAVE fancy mac & cheese.

the grumbles

YES! the love story! I went crazy and read the whole thing in one sitting!

Ashley, The Accidental Olympian

I only recently discovered her amazingness too. I tried her bean dip for the superbowl and her bean dip looked neat and adorable, and mine looked like a MONSTER.

But, it was a tasty monster.

I am going to try to tackle her chocolate cupcakes with the sunken Hershey kiss. Mmmmm.

Damn I am so hungry now.


There's the soup I made last week - the meatballs were divine - we could have eaten them plain!


Looks delicious! I've loved just about everything I've made of hers.


I'm super impressed by your cooking/entertaining/home improvement/movie watching abilities while having an infant. I really am.

Metacognitive Musings

I'm sold! Had not seen the Pioneer Woman's blog. Thanks for the heads up. The food looks delicious, and I'm all 'bout cookin' these days.

Ky (Two Pretzels)

I like any recipe that has the word, "fancy" in it. The cheese? That's a bonus.


Happy Thursday :) I know we haven't been officially introduced but I love you blog and I nominated you for an award on mine :)
Happy almost weekend!!


I am drooling. I love all that stuff. Alas, I'm still on a diet, so it'll have to wait a few more months when I can add the calories back into my daily eating.

Mama Ash

I love seeing the wine in the first picture right then I knew you were my kind a gal!
FYI..have you ever tried Beretta Farm bacon?
It is pretty yummy.
Come visit my blog :)


I made her beef stew with mushrooms and I died, twice. OOh! and the marinated flank steak....yes deerishus.

my 3 monkees

I checked out Pioneer Woman once but just kept on with my normal blogs- until I read your take on her recipe. Thanks so much! I went back to PW's site and fell in love! Check out my blog to see my pics of what I made- you gotta try it! So yummy! Thanks for the inspiration!

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