I made this last night for the first time and it was truly fabulous, I found it in my Better Homes and Gardens magazine from last month. Think of it like a healthy version of Mac ‘n Cheese, it’s packed with vitamin A since the squash replaces some of the cheese. I’d been trying to think of ways to get more veggies in my kids (they love broccoli, green beans, carrots and peas, but it gets old having just steamed veggies every night). This was a hit, so very good!
3 c. butternut squash, peeled and cubed
8 oz dry noodles (cavatappi, elbow, or shells work best)
1 tbsp butter
8 oz cremini or button mushrooms (I omit these since I’m allergic)
3 large green onions, thinly sliced (we use more since we like the flavor so much)
2 tbsp flour
1 c. milk
6 oz fontina cheese, shredded = 1.5 cups (I used monterey jack since I had that on hand)
2 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled (optional)
- Preheat oven to 375°. Lightly coat a 2-quart baking dish with cooking spray, set aside.
- In a medium microwave-safe bowl combine squash & 2 tbsp water; cover with vented plastic wrap. Microwave on high 4 mins; stir. Microwave, covered, another 4 mins or until squash is tender. Mash squash and set aside.
- Meanwhile, cook pasta according to box instructions; drain.
- In a medium pan heat butter over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and onions, cooking about 5 mins or until tender.
- Sprinkle flour over mixture and cook & stir for 1 minute. Add milk and 1/4 tsp each of salt and pepper. Cook & stir over medium heat until thickened and bubbly.
- Remove from heat, stir in squash. Then add pasta, gently fold to combine.
- Transfer half of pasta mixture to baking dish, sprinkle with half the cheese. Add remaining pasta mixture and top with remaining cheese.
- Top with bacin if desired. Bake, uncovered, 20-25 mins or until heated through and cheese is melted. Top with additional green onions.
Makes 6-8 servings
I think next time I’m going to add spinach in place of the mushrooms to try a variation of it, and maybe some cooked, shredded chicken to make it the main dish. This is one of my new favorite dishes!