Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Sweet potato macaroni & cheese

June 4, 2013

My daughter packed some of the leftover potato/cauliflower salad for lunch. I figured that it is actually a complete meal by itself (beans as the sauce (protein), potato (starch), and cauliflower (veggie) but I had her throw in some fruit too. She also packed a yogurt smoothie. My son decided to buy school lunch today. I had the leftover veggie burger. It was even delicious as leftovers. It sealed the deal for me that it is our new fav burger because I totally scarfed it down in no time!

I have been meaning to try a new recipe that my daughter had picked out a few weeks ago but I never got to. Tonight was the night. It is a recipe from Delish.com but of course I altered it to what I had on hand as usual. Carmelized sweet potato, garlic, and rosemary macaroni and cheese. Sounds good, right?!

The first step was to boil 10 garlic cloves then mash them. I skipped that step. I sliced one large sweet potato into 1/4 inch slices and then boiled them for five minutes. Then I sauteed them in a little olive oil for a few minutes until they got a little carmelized. I thought some colored mini shells sounded like fun for our pasta choice. Colored as in made of veggies. Yay! Next, I had to make the cheese sauce. 4 tablespoons of butter. Really? I settled on using about 1 1/2-2 tablespoons. The recipe also called for 4 tablespoons of flour but I used about 1 1/2 so the butter/flour ratio would be ok. Melt the butter, stir in the flour, and cook for a few minutes. I added in a tablespoon of garlic. The recipe called for 3 cups of half and half but I only had two. It'll work. I slowly added in the half and half, salt, and pepper. I brought it to a boil and then simmered for a minute. The recipe called for 2 cups of an Italian blend of cheese (mozzarella, parmesan, and smoked provolone). I used sharp white cheddar instead. The recipe also called for 3/4 cup of asiago. I used mild (regular) cheddar. Part of the cheese was to be set aside and mixed with bread crumbs and olive oil. My daughter isn't big on "casserole" types of macaroni and cheese so I didn't want to bake this or use the topping so I just added all the cheese into the sauce to melt. I didn't have fresh rosemary anymore so I skipped it. I stirred in the sweet potatoes and pasta and we were all set. I went on the back porch to chop off some green onion tops. My daughter followed and grabbed herself a basil leaf. My son followed and grabbed some cilantro. Ha. We all had "fancy" toppings.

We all really liked the sweet potato macaroni. I think they would like it even more if the cheese sauce was a little runnier (more like Kraft consistency) so next time I may eliminate the flour or just use a tiny amount. Overall, it was a win though.

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