Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

The ultimate comfort food. Great for November.
Prep time: 10 minutes            |            Total time: 30 minutes          |           Yield: Serves 4

· 1 medium sized butternut squash (about 2 1/2 pounds)
· 3-4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
· 3-4 fresh sage leaves
· 3/4 cup heavy cream
· 1/4 pound extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated

· 1/4-pound Gruyere cheese, grated
· 1 pound of pasta
· 1 teaspoon kosher salt
· 1 teaspoon ground mustard powder
· 1 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
· 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper 
· Freshly ground black pepper

1. Peel butternut squash with a potato peeler, then cut in half lengthwise. Scoop out seeds and cut the remaining squash into 1" pieces. Combine in a large saucepan with the chicken broth, making sure the broth covers the squash completely. Add the sage leaves and bring all to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about 20 minutes or until squash is fork tender.
2. In the meantime, bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the pound of pasta and cook according to packaged directions until al dente (about 8 minutes). Drain and set aside.
3. Drain the squash, while reserving 1 cup of the chicken broth. Add the cooked squash and sage to the blender or food processor and process in batches until smooth, adding about a cup of the reserved chicken broth. 4. Return the pureed squash to a medium pot over low heat and add the heavy cream, spices, and grated cheddar, stirring until the cheese is melted and the sauce is completely smooth.
4. Pour the sauce over the cooked pasta and stir until well combined. Taste and adjust seasoning, then serve. 

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