Sunday, November 27, 2011

Broccoli-Basil Mac and Cheese

Today I got to cook for my family. Cooking for one gets old. I feel I don't cook quite as many cool dishes because of this restriction.

On the menu today was Broccoli-Basil Mac and Cheese found by my sister here. It came out quite good. I followed her recipe and used Gruyere which worked, but I think next time I would try mixing it up with a different cheese.

Here's the recipe:


- 1 acorn squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into small chunks
- olive oil
- 1 bunch of basil, stems removed
- 2 slices wheat bread, stale or dried out in the oven
- 1/2 a small head of broccoli, roughly chopped
- 4 tablespoons sour cream
- 1 3/4 cups grated white cheddar cheese
- 1 3/4 cups grated gruyere cheese
- handful of cherry tomatoes
- 3 cups (whole wheat) macaroni elbows


1. Preheat your oven to 400F with a rack in the middle.
2. Put a large pot of water on to boil.
3. Peel and chop up squash. Place on a large baking sheet, drizzle with a bit of olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until golden.

4. In a food processor pulse half the basil, all of the bread, the broccoli and a little olive oil. Set mixture aside in a small bowl.

5. In a separate bowl, combine the sour cream and grated cheeses.
6. Blend the cherry tomatoes and remaining basil in the food processor then add this mixture to the sour cream and cheese.

7. Cook pasta for a bit less time than the package suggests. Drain, reserving one cup of the hot pasta water for later use.
8. Return the hot pasta to the pan and add the cheese mixture and then the squash. Add pasta water to thin the sauce to the consistency of cream. It should be a little watery, since it will get soaked up when baking.

9. Transfer to a large casserole dish and top with the green breadcrumb mixture.

10. Bake for 20 -25 minutes or until the topping is crunchy.
11. Remove from the oven, and wait 10 minutes before serving.

It came out great and everyone seemed to like it very much!

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