Monday, October 29, 2012

mac and cheese!

This recipe was created from reading several recipes and experimenting with those recipes.  I think using miso helps knock out that sweet factor that plagues so many vegan mac and cheeses. (Brett and I also add a little sriracha) The squash gives a great consistency and makes for less reliance on nutritional yeast. I love nutritional yeast but it can be overwhelming as a cheese sauce.
So, I have made this twice and both times it was really good. For C and Brett, I used real cheese and mixed in some of the butternut squash mixture to get in her some vegetable. I am going to make a batch of this to have around to add to her mac and cheese, which she loves to take to school. We all cleared our bowls! And that made me happy.

1 lb pasta, cooked al dente and rinsed a bit to prevent sticking (I used shells)

3 cups peeled, chopped and steamed butternut squash, (takes about 15 minutes) cool a bit
1/2 c coconut or soy creamer
2 tsp mild miso
1/4 c plus 1 TB nutritional yeast
1 small garlic clove
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt

1 TB butter
3 TB flour
3/4 c almond or other milk
panko bread crumbs, I like Ian's
daiya cheese

Put the butternut squash and all the seasonings and soy creamer into a high speed blender and puree until smooth.
In a pan, melt the butter and add the flour, stir to combine over low heat, making kind of a paste. Stir for a minute to get the flour taste out, then whisk in the almond milk and continue to whisk until all the lumps are gone. When it starts to thicken, add 1 cup of the butternut squash mixture. Stir to combine and add four cups of cooked pasta. You might want to season with salt and pepper. I'm trying to cut down on salt, so I left it as is. Spoon into buttered ramekins and sprinkle with panko and daiya, if desired. Spritz the top with olive oil to assist in browning.
Bake covered for 25 minutes at 350, then remove the foil and bake until crumbs are golden, about 10 minutes.
For Brett and C, I used the same process with a couple of adjustments:
Added 1 cup of almond milk
1/2 c mozarella cheese
about 1/2 c of the butternut squash mixture (whatever was left)

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