I love mac 'n cheese, but I was in a weird space where I had outgrown the boxed stuff and hadn't quite found an oven recipe I liked. I figured there must be a way to incorporate an easy boil-and-mix technique with fewer chemicals than the prepackaged mac 'n cheese, so I fooled around with butternut squash and different cheeses until I discovered that one combination led to a very similar taste, smell and texture. Butternut squash is great for fall, and this refrigerates and packs very nicely as a lunch. —krannysue
small pasta, such as gemelli or cavatappi
butternut squash, cubed
goat cheese (chevre)
grated Parmesan cheese
red pepper flakes
salt and pepper
In This Recipe
Boil the squash for 10-15 minutes in water seasoned well with salt, red pepper flakes and thyme (dried or fresh).
Remove the squash when it comes apart easily with the back of a spoon, saving the water. Place the cooked squash in a food processor with both cheeses.
Examine the remaining water and add enough to cook your half-pound of pasta. Season accordingly with salt and add pasta to boiling water.
While the pasta is cooking, puree the squash and cheeses, seasoning to taste.
When the pasta is not quite al dente (as it will continue cooking with the cheese sauce), drain and return to the pot.