Monday, May 23, 2011

Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese

I stole this recipe out of a parenting magazine.  With a few tweaks it became one of my favs--but I'll eat anything with squash, & cheese is its own food group at our house, so I guess that's not too surprising.  Happy Meatless Monday!

Here's What You Need:
  • 1 spray olive oil cooking spray
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 pound uncooked whole wheat pasta
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 1/2 c skim milk
  • 1 3/4 c 2% milk reduced fat shredded cheddar or colby jack cheese
  • 3 c butternut squash, diced
  • 2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
Here's What You Do:
  1. Preheat oven to 375.  Spray squash & toss w/salt.  Spread into even layer on cookie sheet & bake 20 minutes or until tender.
  2. Cook pasta for 2 minutes less than package instructions & place in 2 qt baking dish with cooked squash.
  3. Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat.  Whisk in flour & cook 2 minutes.  Stir in milk & cook until thickened.  Stir in cheese until melted & salt & pepper to taste.
  4. Pour cheese sauce over  pasta & squash, mixing well.
  5. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes.
Here's What I Have Learned That May or May Not be Useful:
  • Makes 6 servings.
  • Works just as well to cook the squash ahead of time, which I sometimes do so that I won't forget that I need that extra prep time.
  • If you've got a big squash, you can cut it all up & measure out 3 cup amounts & freeze them for later use.
  • Don't skip the salt on this one.  I generally don't add any salt to my cooking & just let people salt their own on their plate as need be.  This is one recipe that needs it...I think it helps bring out the flavor of the squash when you roast it.

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