Ok, here’s the deal: I saw on Tastespotting or somewhere a picture of macaroni and cheese with butternut squish added to the sauce. Butternut squish would, of course, be baked butternut squash that’s then mashed. And I thought to myself, “Hmmm, I need to make a bunch of food for the next four days, I like macaroni and cheese, and I have some acorn squish in the fridge and basic sauce making skills… Recipes? We don’t need no steeenkin’ recipes!”
So I cooked it up and it’s pretty yummy to my tastebuds. The acorn squish adds something to the sauce, a little sweetness and thickening without flour.
But boy howdy am I glad I didn’t look up the receta that everyone was using. Because, according to the Work it, Mom! blog, the recipe is a total disaster. What damn fool puts cream cheese, let alone non-fat cream cheese, into Mac and Cheese? That’s a Sandra Lee move if I ever heard one.
…okay, so I myself used soy milk, but I’ve been doing that since 1999. I’m lactose intolerant, okay!? And you don’t have to, you can use the regular milk. So, neener.
My recipe is nothing resembling low cal or low fat. If that skeers you, don’t click the more thingie. Wuss.
Mary Sue’s Macaroni and Peas with Acorn Squish
Makes enough to feed one woman for seven meals.
3 cups dried macaroni
2 cups frozen green peas
2 T butter
1 c Acorn squish (acorn squash that’s been baked and mashed previously, ’cause doing that on the day of making this recipe is just asking for trouble)
1c milk-type product of choice
2 c grated cheddar cheese
Cracked pepper, salt, and sriatcha to taste.
Bring a big ol’ pot of water to boil. When it’s nice and roil-y, dump in the macaroni. Start pulling the other ingredients out of the fridge at this time, and grate your cheese (unless you’re one of those crazy people with money to burn who buys pre-grated cheese). But watch the pot o’ macaronis, because when it starts to roil-boil again, dump in the frozen peas. Set the oven to preheat at 350 degrees.
Melt the butter in a big ol’ saucepan on medium heat. When it’s all melted and foamy, add in the acorn squish and milk-type product (you know, almond milk would probably be really good, too). Whisk together until the big lumps of the squish are smoothed out. This isn’t going to go perfectly smooth unless you attack it with a stick blender, which to me would be one more thing I’d have to wash, but if that’s what floats your boat, have fun storming the castle! At about this point, your macaronis will be rather al-dente (meaning kinda flexible and kinda crunchy) so leave the saucepan to bubble gently and drain the macaronis and the peas and set aside for a bit.
Back to the saucepan! Drop in about 3/4 c of the cheese and whisk until it’s well incorporated. Then dump in another 3/4 c of the cheese and do the whisky thing. And have a shot of whiskey. Unless you don’t wanna. ANYWAY, you’ll notice that leaves 1/2c of cheese still sitting forlornly wherever you grated it. Do not cry for the poor lonely cheese, ’cause we’ll come back to it later. Now, taste the sauce and add in the pepper, salt, and sriatcha. If you don’t know what Sriatcha is, don’t worry, you probably won’t like it much anway.
Put the macaronis and peas into an oven-safe pan or dish. Then pour your lovely sauce over it and mix the two together. Grab that lonely 1/2c of cheese and spread it across the top, then pop the whole thing in the oven uncovered for about 10-15 minutes, the cheese on top should be melted.
Serve instantly or divvy out into containers for lunchtime consumption.