Baked Mac and Cheese with Butternut Squash, Sage, Carmelized Onions, and Red Sweet Paprika Peppers

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Inaugural Post!  Wow… that is certainly a rough start.  I’m going to attempt to post twice a week.  One post will be a recipe and the other post will be about something food-ish.  We’ll explore the parameters of food-ish as we go, but I certainly hope that it’s enjoyable.  Suggestions of Foodish Topics are always welcome, as are new banner images (That’s me cooking with the oversight of my cats, in Knoxville.  Yay MS Paint!).

So, enough dallying, let’s get going with some great Mac and Cheese! I made this yesterday, before I planned to restart this blog. Future pictures shouldn’t look like they’re from my cellphone.

Recipe inspired by: Broke Ass Gourmet

Baked Mac and Cheese with Butternut Squash, Sage, Carmelized Onions, and Red Sweet Paprika Peppers

1lb whole wheat pasta
2 c roasted butternut squash (about 1 medium or 1/2 of large) (LOCAL – Knoxville garden)
1 c diced onion ( LOCAL – Colvin Family Farms Spring City, TN)
1/2 c +1 tbsp butter
1 medium sweet paprika pepper, seeded and diced ( LOCAL – the Pepper Dude at the Market Square Farmers Market)
1/8 c chopped sage (LOCAL – my garden)
1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/4 c water and 1/4 c unsweetened yogurt (or 1/2 c milk)
1/2lb colby chedder chopped into ~1/2 inch slices (Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheese Austin, KY – not w/in 100 miles, but close!)
Asagio cheese (again Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheese Austin, KY )

Boil pasta according to direction, set aside

Roast squash by cutting in half lengthwise. Place squash halves cut-side down in deep roasting dish. Fill dish about 1/2-3/4 inch deep with water. Bake at 400 for about 40 minutes or until soft. This could take up to an hour if you have a thick, dense squash. When squash is ready, remove from oven and scoop out 2 cups of roasted squash flesh. Work out any chunks with a fork, immersion blender, or food processor. Any extra squash can be scooped into a freezer container and kept in the freezer for future use.

Sweat onion until almost transparent. Add 1 tbsp butter, diced pepper, and sage. Allow to continue to soften and caramelize. When caramelized, remove from heat and set aside.

Melt 1/2 c butter in large pot. When melted, slowly add flour to create pasty mixture. Use a whisk or fork to keep from lumping. Add water/yogurt or milk. Add cheese. When melted, fold in butternut squash.

With heat on low or off, fold cooked pasta into cheesysquash mixture. If your pot can be put into the oven (like mine), then top with grated asagio cheese, cover, and bake for 20-30 minutes at 350F. Or put cheesy,squashy,sagey pasta into baking dish, top with asagio cheese, and cover and bake for 20-30 minutes at 350F.

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Comments Off on Baked Mac and Cheese with Butternut Squash, Sage, Carmelized Onions, and Red Sweet Paprika Peppers

Filed under Butternut Squash, Cheese, Paprika, Pasta, Recipe, Sage, Vegetarian

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