Dara and I were clearly on the same page this week. Now that fall is officially upon us, we’re heavy in to the comfort foods and pasta sits at the very top of our faves list.
In addition to Dara’s recipe for a super simple and quick mac & cheese, I’ve got this doozy for you. It’s sort of a simple mac and cheese, too. Made extra creamy by the addition of…squash!
And get this, it takes a measly 5 ingredients to get it on the table.
I used an acorn squash in this recipe because well, I had one. Switch it up with butternut, buttercup or hubbard. Each will give you a slightly different flave. If butternut squash is your reference here, acorn is less sweet.
The flesh breaks downs really easily. I used a hand blender to smooth it out, but you could also use a big whisk.
Because this is such a simple recipe, the quality of the ingredients really matter. Use fresh sage and the real deal parmesan, OK? Grana padano would work well too.
If it’s your first time browning butter, I’m SO excited for you. It’s a simple technique that adds a delicious toasted caramelly (how is that not a word?) flavour to sweet or savoury dishes.
Reserving the pasta water is a must here. I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again. I always reserve some pasta water. Even if you don’t need it for your sauce, I make sure to add a tablespoon or so per cup to any leftovers I keep. Don’t mix it in though. When you reheat your pasta, stir it halfway through and the remaining pasta water will make your sauce saucy again, without thinning it out too much. Otherwise, leftover pasta will absorb the water from the sauce leaving you with dry noodles.
Drain your pasta and use the same pot to mix the whole deal together. Fewer dishes = happy cleaner upper (AKA husband). Add pasta water ¼ cup at a time until you get a perfect creamy coating.
Do not skimp on the sage, either. It’s dynamite.