The sweet roasted squash adds a new dimension and a lovely surprise to this rich mac and cheese. Don’t skip on the crumb topping if you have time – it is worth the effort!
Roasted Honeynut Squash Mac & Cheese
- 3 cups Honeynut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 3/4-inch cubes
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1 lb pasta of choice
- 8 Tbsp butter, divided
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup whipping cream
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups grated cheddar cheese
- 1 1/2 cups grated Gruyere
- Salt and pepper
- 1/3 cup grated parmesan
- 1 cup panko crumbs
- 2 tsp chopped thyme leaves
- 2 Tbsp chopped parsley for serving
If you’ve never tried Honeynut squash, it is delish! It looks like a smaller Butternut squash but about 10 times sweeter! If you can’t find it, Butternut will do just fine!
Toss the squash with the olive oil and salt and pepper and roast in a 375°F for 20 minutes or until tender.
Cook the pasta in plenty of salted boiling water until al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta liquid and drain.
In the same pot, melt 4 Tbsp butter over medium heat and add the flour. Stir constantly until well incorporated. Add the 1/2 cup of milk at a time whisking in between additions to prevent lumps. Add the cream, pasta water, nutmeg and garlic and bring to a very gentle simmer. Remove from heat and add 1 1/2 cups cheddar, all the Gruyere and stir to melt. Adjust seasoning.
Dump in the pasta and squash and toss gently to coat. Turn the pasta into a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheddar and parmesan.
In a medium pan, melt the remaining butter and add the thyme leaves. Stir in the bread crumbs to coat evenly and season with salt and pepper. Spread over the pasta and bake for 15 minutes or until the top is golden brown.
Sprinkle with parsley and serve.