This recipe turned me into a child again. My favorite meal as a kid was macaroni and cheese which, until I moved here, I was convinced was an Italian dish. I rarely make it for my own children, however, because I have a sadistic tendency to make them eat a healthy diet full of fresh vegetables which they could care less about… Which is why I was thrilled to come across this recipe on BuzzFeed: a creamy plate of mac and cheese that my inner-child so deeply desires, with hidden veggies in the mix to placate my inner-mommy. The results were delicious, and enjoyed by mother and children alike!
Veggie-filled Mac and Cheese
- 1 pound (450 g) elbow macaroni
- ½ cup water
- 2 cups (200 g) cauliflower florets
- 2 cups (250 g) butternut squash, diced
- 1 1/2 cups (200 g) carrots, sliced
- 2 cups milk
- 2 cups (200 g) cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1/2 cup (60 g) shredded parmesan cheese
- 3.5 ounces (100 g) cream cheese
Combine water, cauliflower, squash, and carrots in a pot over medium heat. Cover and cook until vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes (add more water if necessary).
Meanwhile, boil a large pot of salted water and cook the pasta until very al dente (take about 2 minutes off the total cooking time indicated on the pasta package). Drain and set aside.
When the veggies are tender, transfer them to a blender, including the cooking water, and blend until smooth. Return blended veggies to the pot over medium heat, and add the milk, cheese, and cream cheese. Stir until smooth. Add macaroni, turn off heat, mix thoroughly, and cover for 10 minutes before serving.