Pumpkin Mac and Cheese

January 16, 2014 § Leave a comment

For many, January is all about health food and vegetables and juicing. I bought a juice at my local Whole Foods and could not get over the fact that my juice tasted like BEETS. Beets are delicious but not when I’m drinking them. Maybe next time.

Lets be honest, its cold and rainy out and and we just want comfort food. We’re now going to combine vegetables and comfort. Introducing: pumpkin mac and cheese. (I’m aware I’m not really “introducing” this as it’s been around for awhile, but I just hopped on the train)

I’ve said, this year I’m only featuring really good recipes. This is one of those. I’ve made it twice now and really love it. It’s just the right combination of cheese, pumpkin, bread crumb topping and pasta. Best part about this is it’s adaptable. I’ve made it with different kinds of cheese, whatever fresh herbs I have on hand, canned and freshly pureed pumpkin and love it every time. And the leftovers taste delicious.

To start we make make our pasta. Or rather, make our pasta while we also make the cheese/pumpkin sauce. We melt butter, add flour, S&P, then add milk and cream until slightly thickened. Then we add pumpkin, cheese and herbs and it gets melty, creamy and is now SO GOOD. I may sneak some spoonfuls. Combine pasta, sauce pour in the pan; top with breadcrumbs and we are so close to being in business. Bake while you stare in the oven because you’re very hungry. Then enjoy.

Pumpkin Mac and Cheese
adapted from Better Homes & Gardens

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dried elbow macaronia
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 tsp S&P
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 & 1/2 cups shredded parmesan cheese, divided
  • 1, 15 oz can pumpkin puree
  • 1 tbsp fresh herbs like thyme or sage
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs

To make

1) Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 2 qt casserole dish with non-stick spray.
2) In large pot, boil water for pasta. Cook according to package and drain. Set aside.
3) While pasta is being made, make the sauce. In medium saucepan, melt butter in a pan. Stir in flour and s&p. Add cream and milk. Heat over low until warm and slightly thickened. Next, add 1 cup of parmesan cheese, pumpkin and herbs. Stir until cheese is melted and sauce is creamy. Remove from heat.
4) Stir pasta into cheese. Pour into baking dish. Top with bread crumbs and 1/2 cup cheese and bake for 30 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes. Enjoy!

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