Day 22: The wonderful world of macaroni cheese

January 22, 2007


After our earlier brush with four consecutive editions of macaroni cheese, we were not particularly looking forward to the sequel; Boo’s Butternut Squash Mac-n-Cheese. However, despite our many preconceptions, this is a remarkably tasty dish that we all really enjoyed. I never would have thought of adding squash to a creamy pasta sauce, but it adds a delicate flavour, a good yellow colour and a richness which is just as satisfying as the heavier white-sauce based cheese sauces. We didn’t have frozen cooked butternut squash, only a fresh one left over from before we started this endeavour. (Wow, squash really does last a long time without going mouldy; a very economical vegetable it would seem.) Having only oven-baked squash into fake fries and made it into soup, I had no idea how to just cook it. According to the trusty internet, it can be steamed, boiled, microwaved or baked (recommended). I simmered it in a little water then squished it with a potato masher. Had we used frozen squash, we’d have fewer dirty dishes to wash, and this would have been even easier. I wouldn’t say that this was incredibly simple to make, but it was straightforward and the instructions were clear.

The dish is a little same-y, in that the flavour is even throughout. However, this is not necessarily a bad thing (see our love of pesto). It is suggested that this meal is a side dish for chicken sandwiches, or eaten with a green salad. We served it on a bed of spinach for a bit of contrast. All in all, we would highly recommend this method for making macaroni cheese. Winner!

This was apparently one of Boo’s (Rachael Ray’s dog) favourite meals. She liked onion and garlic, and would take butternut squash over steak. Tomorrow, when the bonus recipe is for an ice cream desert with a peanut sauce, we are told that Boo liked Skippy brand peanut butter. How do you find that out? Did she do taste trials? So far the dog seemed to have had good taste. Let’s see how Boo’s Smoky Chicken Patties on Buttered Toast, and Boo’s Vanilla Ice Cream with Chunky Peanut Butter Sauce and Gingersnaps, shape up.

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  • Reply one year project » Blog Archive » Day 27: Pumpkin- the new cheese sauce January 27, 2007 at 9:04 pm

    […] The Pumpkin Pasta with Sausage and Wild Mushrooms wasn’t tremendously photogenic, but it was tangy, creamy, spicy and Christmassy all at once. The seasonal element came from the cinnamon and nutmeg, rather than the pumpkin. The pumpkin blended with the sausage, mushrooms, white wine, stock and cream to create a great pasta sauce. Once the nutmeg and cinnamon were added, the balance of flavours became intriguing; complicated but well balanced. We had never considered using pureed vegetables to thicken a basic sauce before we embarked on this project. Between this and the butternut squash macaroni cheese, we may have adopted a whole new approach to wholesome sauce-making. […]

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