Bless Her Heart

Posted by on Apr 13, 2016 in Pasta | 0 comments

Daphne Oz takes a lot of social media heat and she glows by the fire; I am a fan.  Among other things, she brings a healthy, kid-friendly balance to otherwise cheffy dishes on ABC’s, The Chew.  Before we left on MP’s award trip (more about that later) I put together her simple, lightened up Butternut Squash Macaroni and Cheese. 

Daphne Oz

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In addition, I used fresh cubed squash available in most markets now.  Gluten-free kiddos?  Use appropriate pasta.

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There are other variations; Daphne’s technique mimics a rich, indulgent béchamel sauce by steeping the squash in milk; cool trick. I will add, don’t worry if the milk looks curdled.

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Once the squash is tender, add to a blender (I used a food processor) and puree until smooth.

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Meanwhile, melt butter in a skillet; add the minced shallot (and a hefty pinch of crushed red pepper in our pot) and sauté shallot until tender seasoning with salt and pepper.

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Pour in the squash puree, stock,

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a generous amount of nutmeg, and cheese. Simmer about 5 minutes until thickened.

Cook the elbow macaroni according to package directions.  The recipe calls for a full pound—I suggest 12 ounces or three-quarters of the pasta. Drain the pasta, reserving ½-3/4's cup of pasta water; add enough pasta water to loosen the sauce.

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Taste the sauce and adjust seasonings; then toss with the elbow macaroni.

A final step includes topping the dish with toasted panko breadcrumbs—but I skipped this

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and served it straight up garnished with freshly chopped parsley, a handful of halved cherry tomatoes, and a snowy shower of more cheese.

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Not particularly fancy, but satisfying, veggie sweet and creamy without going overboard.

I dug it, although it wasn’t MP’s favorite—Silly Poppy!

Let me know how Kate, Lauren, Wyatt, and Sawyer like this one.

♥ ♥ ♥

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