This mac & cheese recipe is the standard one around our house. Usually we add cherry tomatoes to it but since we are in the middle of the tundra right now tomatoes are not really at their best. We do though have a lot of squash right now so I thought that roasted it would add a nice sweetness that the tomatoes usually do.
It really was a nice addition to the mac & cheese. Its not quite as sweet as the tomatoes but it is a richer sweetness. The creamy texture blends in really well with the pasta & cheese sauce as well.
Mac & Cheese with Butternut Squash
1 1/2 c butternut squash, peeled & cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3/4 lb penne pasta
1 medium onion
1 Tbs butter
1/8 C flour
1 C milk
1/2 C heavy cream
1 1/2 C grated cheddar cheese
3/4 C grated gryere
Put the squash in a small roasting pan & coat with a little olive oil. Roast at 400 F for 30 - 45 minutes until soft & starting to brown. Set aside.
Cook pasta according to directions drain and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 F
Heat a small skillet over low heat. Slice onion very thin. Add onion to skillet and saute slowly until brown and carmelized. Mix into pasta.
In a small saucepan melt butter over med-low heat. Add flour an stir constantly for 1 minute. Do not allow to brown. Slowly whisk in milk and cream. Stir until hot and smooth and slightly thickened, about 1 minute. Turn heat to low and add cheese. Whisk until melted. Add a pinch of dry mustard and salt and pepper to taste.
Butter a glass casserole dish. Add pasta, onions, butternut squash and cheese sauce. Mix well until cheese sauce covers everything. Sprinkle panko over the top.
Bake for 25 minutes.