16 August, 20160
Hello, hello! Sunshine for dinner? This will have you covered, Pumpkin Macaroni Cheese! The pumpkin adds a little bit of sweetness to your dish, add some chicken or tuna, peas, little broccolini florets, cubes of roasted pumpkin, pine nuts, spinach… you can add so much to it… bacon bits or even put it over a shepherds pie mix. Versatile. I like that it’s got hidden pumpkin in it too because my son’s quite picky sometimes, so this gets a bit of the “Poisonous Vegetable” stuff in him without tears.
1/2 butternut pumpkin
Spray olive oil
1 pack of macaroni of your choice
4 tablespoons butter
6 tablespoons flour
1 cup grated cheese of your choice (I used a sharp cheddar)
1 cup panko crumbs
Cook the macaroni as per instructions on the pack then drain
Pre heat oven to 200 degrees
Remove seeds from pumpkin and spray or thinly coat with olive oil, season then pop into the oven on a tray until soft and cooked through. When it’s done remove the pumpkin and scoop out the flesh, set this aside.
In a saucepan, melt the butter then gradually add the flour. Keep stirring until the flour is cooked through, this will take a few minutes. Gradually whisk in some milk, you want a thick, double cream like consistency. When this is reached add the grated cheese gradually whisking that through until you have a silky sauce. Then add the scooped out pumpkin flesh, whisking through until it’s mixed in well.
Cook Panko crumbs in a fry pan with a small bit of olive oil or butter so they are slightly golden.
Reduce oven to 170 degrees
In a big bowl add the macaroni and the sauce, stir to combine. Pop into a baking dish and sprinkle with the toasted Panko crumbs. Warm through in the oven, which shouldn’t take too long, it depends on the size of your baking tray but about 15 mins should do it.