SO. Last week while grocery shopping, I noticed this particular pumpkin. A BUTTERNUT squash pumpkin. For a simple, bottle shaped vegetable (fruit?), this butternut squash has quite the reputation. Associated with all kinds of delicious, cozy, heartwarming dishes you see on American cooking shows or Martha Stewart, it's almost as iconic for autumn as a turkey is for Christmas. So! I put that squash in my basket (much less traumatizing than putting the lotion in the basket) and hop-skipped home to google me some dishes.
After like ten seconds, I ran into this beautiful vegan recipe for roasted butternut squash mac'n'cheese. Now, I'm not a vegan, but I'm always on the lookout for delicious vegetarian dishes to add to my repertoire. Especially since the boy finds fault in EVERY vegetarian dish, so I keep trying for that holy grail. I chose to just use regular cheese for the recipe instead of the alternative, and I got my seasoning inspiration from a Jamie Oliver recipe for roasted butternut squash.
SO, what you'll need:
- One or two butternut squash pumpkins - trust me, they shrink a lot while roasting and you'll want to keep eating them 'cause they're so delicious
- Pasta in a shape that will taste yummy with cheesy sauce. Preferably big so the sauce can stick to it
- Cheese: I used gruyère but you can use whatever you like
- Milk, butter and flower or just one of those easy packages to make béchamel sauce/white sauce
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Seasoning: chili flakes, salt, coriander powder, cinnamon, lemon juice
What you'll do:
- Preheat the oven to 200°C
- Cut the squash in two halves, remove the seeds with a spoon and peel it (my tip: just use a peeling knife)
- Slice squash in cubes. The smaller, the sooner it will cook
- Line a casserole with aluminium foil
- Spread out the cubes on the aluminium foil, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle the herbs on top. I'd leave the lemon juice for after the roasting, but I bet it would be pretty foolproof even if you didn't
- Let that shiz roast for about 40 minutes or until cooked through and browning
- About ten minutes before your 40 minutes are up, start cooking your macaroni
- At the same time, start preparing your cheese sauce. Grate up your cheese of choice and mix it in your béchamel sauce until all of it is supper yummy and thick and stringy when you pull your spoon out of it. I just did the package powder + milk version of béchamel sauce so I don't have tips on how to cook that from scratch. Just not worth it in my opinion, you don't even taste the difference.
- Throw your cooked macaroni in your cheesesauce and stir until all of the pasta is coated in cheesy deliciousness
- Serve in a bowl, with the roasted pumpkin tossed in there
And if you have some leftovers, you have a GREAT lunch for your next workday!
Have you cooked with butternut squash before? It's a total recommendation: very juicy and sweet. Will you be trying it?