Macaroni And Cheese With A Superb Twist

This is one dish you will  make and re-make for years to come. It is truly a yummy, comfort food to make. Let’s get started.

  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, diced into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 4 slices hearty sourdough bread, roughly torn
  • 4 tbsp. chilled butter, divided
  • 1 cup grated aged white cheddar
  • 1 3/4 cup macaroni
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 2 cups whole milk (or 1 1/4 whole milk, 3/4 cup whipping cream)
  • 1/2 cup Havarti cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup McLarens cheese
  • 1 cup Monteray Jack cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
  • 1 tsp. dry mustard
  • pinch of cayenne
  • pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 5 oz. cooked lobster meat

 

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Generously butter 6 individual baking dishes or a 2 qt. casserole dish and set aside. Lower oven to 350 degrees.

Toss 1 1/2 cups of the diced squash and oil together and spread out in an oven proof dish large enough to hold the cubes in a single layer. Bake for 18-22 minutes until tender but still firm.

Combine the torn bread with 2 tbsp. of diced butter in a processor and spin until coarse crumbs. Place in a bowl, stir in the aged cheddar and set aside.

Cook the macaroni until about halfway tender. Drain and transfer to a bowl. Set aside.

Melt the remaining butter in a large saucepan, add the flour and whisk until well combined. slowly add the milk/cream whisking the whole time until it becomes thickened. Stir in the cheeses, mustard, cayenne and nutmeg. Fold in the macaroni, baked squash and gently heat through.

Spoon into the baking dishes and sprinkle the crumb mixture over and bake for about 20-30 minutes until golden and bubbling in a 350 degree oven.

Serve with a crisp salad and a glass of, perhaps, a Chardonnay. Ummm… better yet a Pinot Gris.

 

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