EXCERPT: 'The Recipe Club'

I think your mom's right. If your father could invent a quiet garbage truck, then you really would be rich. Oh, and know what? I forgot to tell you we just got one of those new telephones with the buttons instead of the dial. Too bad your father didn't invent that! That's all for now. My fingers hurt from the pencil. (Maybe your father can invent a pencil that writes its own letters!)

Love,

Lillypad

Jacques' Fancy Meatloaf 1–1/2 p ounds gro und beef 1 cup breadcrumbs 3 eggs 3 tablespoons milk 1 celery stalk, finely chopped 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 1 medium onion, finely chopped 1 teaspoon dried thyme 1 teaspoon salt Ground black pepper

for the glaze: 3 tablespoons ketchup 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard 1 teaspoon Worcester shire sauce

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Then lightly grease a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan.

2. In a bowl, mix the meatloaf ingredients together until well combined. Press the mix ture eve ly into the prepared loaf pan. Bake until cooked through, 45 to 55 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, whisk together the ketchup, mustard, andm Worestershire sauce. Generously brush the top of the baked meatloaf with the glaze. Bake for 5 minutes more. Let cool slightly before slicing and serving.

Dear Lilly, yes!! I would like to join the Recipe Club! And I can definitely sleep over next week. But not on a school night. It's my turn for the Recipe Club, right? So this is Mommy's Macaroni and Cheese. The one she made last time you were here.

xxxx

Valerie

Mommy's Macaroni & Cheese Serves 4 to 6

For the macaroni: 3 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 (8-ounce) package elbow macaroni ½ pound American cheese, cubed ¼ cup milk ½ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper For the breadcrumbs : 2 to 3 slices cheap white bread (airy, not dense), crusts removed 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

For the breadcrumbs : 2 to 3 slices cheap white bread (airy, not dense), crusts removed 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

1. To make the breadcrumbs, rub the bread vigorously between your palms until coarse crumbs form. The crumbs will be unevenly shaped.

2. Melt the butter in a medium pan over medium-high heat. Add the crumbs and cook, stirring, until the crumbs are coated with butter, but not browned (the butter keeps the crumbs from burning, browns them nicely, and makes a great crunch). Transfer the crumbs to a bowl.

3. To make the macaroni, preheat the oven to 375° F. Grease a 1½-quart casserole dish with 1 tablespoon butter.

4. In a pot of boiling water, cook the macaroni according to the packagedirections. Drain and return to the pot.

5. Place the cheese, milk, remaining 2 tablespoons butter, salt, and pepper in the top of a double boiler or bowl set over a pot of boiling water. Cook, covered, until the cheese is melted, 3 to 5 minutes. Simmer the mixture uncovered, stirring, until smooth, about 1 minute more.

6. Add the cheese to the pot of cooked macaroni and stir to coat. Transfer the macaroni to the prepared casserole. Top with the breadcrumbs. Bake 15 to 20 minutes, until the top is golden brown.

p.s. My mother has a friend from Paris. He made this fancy meatloaf, which he called a "patay." I guess his English isn't so good.

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