Healthy Cooking Thursday – Butternut Macaroni and Cheese

By Chef Lisa
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Goat cheese sets this mac 'n' cheese apartBehold, one of my happiest accidents. This recipe was born when I didn't have a lot of food in the house and needed to come up with dinner. I forget what I served it with because, frankly, this side dish was so delicious it eclipsed anything else from the meal.

I recommend using a type of pasta with nooks and crannies to ensure that gobs of goat cheese and butternut will be captured in each bite. I especially like little shells (orecchiette) for this recipe; elbows would also work well. After all, this is really just a grown up version of mac ‘n’ chee, with the addition of some sneaky vegetables.  (If you are unsure about dealing with butternut squash, check out my very first post for A Weight Lifted about the squash family.)  What's better than decadent tasting healthy food?

Cheesy Butternut Pastaserves 4

2 cups roasted and pureed butternut squash (if you want to make this recipe even easier, avoid the step of roasting the squash by using pureed winter squash from the frozen foods section of the store)
8 ounces cooked pasta (4 ounces dry)
4 ounces chevre (soft goat cheese)
salt and pepper to taste
fresh parsley (optional)

Combine it all, and hold on to your hat.  If your butternut has a low moisture content, you could add a little milk, rice milk, water, or olive oil to moisten the mix. 

What are your favorite uses for butternut puree?
 

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