Macaroni cheese is the ultimate comfort food meal, which is great for lunch, dinner or a midnight snack! This version is experimenting with a vegetable version of the macaroni sauce and also using a nice and strong cheese called Gorgonzola.
Tips on making the perfect macaroni cheese
- To make your macaroni cheese extra creamy, cook your pasta in milk instead of water. Unlike water, the milk has a tendency to burn if not stirred, so make sure you watch it all the time. Alternatively you can cook the pasta in water and then add a dollop of double cream at the end.
- If your macaroni cheese is too try, just add more milk to your baking dish. The amount of milk or water depends on the type of pasta you have (e.g wholemeal pasta soaks more liquid than white pasta).
- To make sure that your macaroni and cheese dish is full of flavour, use the the right type of pasta. Open, large pasta is best, whereas spaghetti or linguine are best left for other recipes.
- Other cheeses that are great to use include: Gruyere, gouda, parmesan, cheddar or other hard cheeses. If you don’t have the right type of cheese, don’t worry and use whatever you have at hand. I’ve previously used even a mixture of spreadable cheese and cheddar and it worked just fine!
Macaroni & Cheese with butternut squash and Gorgonzola sauce
- 200 g pasta white or wholemeal
- 250 ml milk
- 1 medium size butternut squash
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 150 g Gorgonzola cheese grated
- large pinch of ground pepper
- large pinch of salt
- large pinch of nutmeg
- 50 g unsalted butter (plus about 2 tablespoons for the sauce)
- Peel and chop the butternut squash into large cubes and boil it in a medium saucepan until completely soft. This will take about 10-15 minutes.
- Mash the butternut squash with more milk and butter and add salt & pepper to taste.
- Make the pasta according to your pasta packaging. Boil enough water with a pinch of salt and then add your pasta. Boil for about 7-10 minutes depending on what kind of pasta you have.
- To prepare your sauce, you need to first heat the milk with the seasoning (nutmeg, salt & ground pepper) and bring to boil. Take the saucepan off the heat and carry on with the next step.
- Melt the butter gently in another saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and mix firmly with a wooden spoon. Let the butter and flour turn golden yellow (which might take about 2-3 minutes) and then add slowly add 1/2 of the infused milk mixture. Keep whisking or stirring so that you don't get any lumps.
- Combine the butternut squash and the butter & flour mixture together to make a smooth sauce. Taste to check if it needs more seasoning.
- In the large ovenproof dish, place a layer of the cooked pasta and pour over the butternut squash sauce.
- Generously sprinkle with Gorgonzola cheese.
- Bake in the oven (on 180 C) for about 20 minutes or until the top is lightly golden and the cheese has melted.
- Serve with a side salad or on it's own.