Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Hiding veggies like I'm Jessica Seinfeld

Dishes are for suckers.

Especially when you don't have a dishwasher. (Or when you feel guilty making your handsome dish washer hang out in the kitchen all night). So I like to do what I can to make dish doing a little easier…I clean as I go, I re-use dishes when I can, and as you know, I swear by the all-wondrous immersion blender. (Ever cleaned a blender? Totally worth the 30 bucks to never have to clean one again.)

When I found this recipe, I had to roll my eyes at all of reviewers bitching about the number of dishes it makes. So screw that. Their way: six pots/pans/bowls. My way: two dish meal, kids. It's like magic.

Speaking of magic, this Mac & Cheese is so totally healthy food in disguise (well, kinda. It's still cheese and carbs. Over it.) That awesome cheddary color is all butternut squash, but the flavor is all cheese. I'm guessing this is the kind of thing I'll have to feed the kids someday when they turn against me and refuse to eat anything but Mac & Cheese and chicken nuggets...fitting, since that's all I want these days. I've resisted the mcnuggets so far, but I had to cave for the pasta.

We actually had broccoli on the side, but we both ended up mixing it in to the pasta as we ate. Feel free to skip the broc if one veggie is enough for you (one veggie should never be enough, btw) or go ahead and add in a cup or so of lightly steamed, bite-size pieces before cooking. Or have it on the's a good addition, either way.

Veggie Mac & Cheese
olive oil (1 tsp or so)
1 shallot, peeled and diced
12 oz package cubed butternut squash
3/4 cup chicken broth
3/4 cup 1% milk
salt (about 1/2 tsp)
pepper (about 1/4 tsp)
Fat free greek yogurt (2-3 tbsp)
1 cup shredded fontina (Dutch)
1/2 cup shredded romano cheese (divided)
2 cups cavatappi pasta
Italian breadcrumbs
Heat oven to 375

Boil water for pasta in large sauce pan, and then cook for about 5 minutes (about half the time it says on the package). Drain.

Rinse pan, then heat oil and shallot over medium high, and cook about 2 minutes. Add squash, milk and broth. Bring to a simmer, then cover and cook over low about 10 minutes or until squash is soft.

Blend squash mix with an immersion blender (or transfer all to a blender then transfer back to pan when smooth), then stir in yogurt, salt and pepper. Stir in fontina and 1/4 cup roman until mostly melted, then add pasta and mix gently.

Coat a medium baking pan with cooking spray and pour in pasta mix. Sprinkle remaining romano cheese and breadcrumbs lightly across top.

Cook for 30 minutes or until bubbly.

1 comment:

  1. Pammy,

    Can you share with me the attributes of the shallot and why it's superior to an onion in recipes? I always use recipes that call for shallots but it's one ingredient that I never seem to remember to buy at the store and it's not one that I'm going to make a special trip for.

    - Sarah