For rich, warm comfort food start with a simple roux of butter and flour. Add milk and sharply flavored Cheddar and Parmesan cheeses to make a velvety sauce, then bake with macaroni. Buttered breadcrumbs and a dash of paprika make an attractive crust.
This is a forgiving recipe, and a great way to get your greens! Kale is cooked with onions and garlic, a small amount of pancetta or bacon, and cannellini beans to make a great main dish for two or side dish for 4 or more.
Zucchini and yellow bell peppers are grilled ahead of time and combined with shrimp, cherry tomatoes, and feta cheese. I leave the Dijon dressing on the side and toss it at the picnic, just before serving.