In October, while one of my friends was in town, I mentioned to get that I was really enthusiastic to try making vegan mac and "cheese." She was skeptical and asked a lot of questions. Understandably so, cheese is delicious and I'm generally skeptical of stuff that claims to taste "like the real thing." But, I was confident about vegan mac and cheese being delicious and was very holy than thou in my insistence that it would be great.
Last week, Joe had a dental procedure that required him to be on soft foods for a few days. We went to whole foods and he picked up some mac and cheese and other soft foods. At the very top of the shelf, I noticed a prepackaged brand of vegan brown rice pasta mac and "chreese" (yes, they call it chreese. red flag #1) . Deciding this would probably be good (I mean, all the vegan recipes I'd cooked had been delicious), I picked up a box to have for dinner one night. It's not like I normally eat mac and cheese but let's be real, it is delicious. I wanted to try a vegan version because I was wondering whether the vegan version could guiltlessly fill the void in my life left open long ago.
So, Thursday night, after a long day, I started making my vegan mac and "chreese." It was an unmitigated disaster. This was quite possibly the most unappetizing thing I have even put in my mouth. From the minute I started mixing the "chreese"sauce, I knew bad things were going to happen. Here is the email I sent to my friend notifying her of my awful experience.
So that vegan mac and cheese was HORRENDOUS. As in, I was mixing the "cheese" sauce and was like this smells so weird it is triggering my gag reflex. I tasted it and didn't even swallow. Joe was observing the entire process, quietly laughing to himself with a bowl of real mac and cheese! I spit it out in the sink and threw the rest down the disposal. I am now eating real mac and cheese!
So, the boxed vegan mac and cheese was a HUGE mistake and I put aside my no dairy experiment to have the only thing that could cure the disaster - a bowl of real mac and cheese. You guys, there are no words to describe how gross this was. Like I said, the minute the "chreese" mix came of out of the packet, the smell signaled bad news. I am very sensitive to bad smells and the minute I commented on the smell, Joe knew I wasn't going to eat any of what I was making. My only regret is that I made the mistake of actually putting that mess into my mouth. I can't even describe what it tasted like but just thinking about it makes me gag.
So lesson learned here - don't trust stuff that comes in a box and tells you to just add your favorite non-dairy milk. No good will come of it. I am however, still confident that vegan mac and "cheese" made from scratch will taste good. It has to, right?