Roasted Root Vegetable Macaroni & Cheese November 8, 2010Posted by Angela @ Making Food for Friends in dinner, good for a group, vegetarian.
Tags: dinner, root vegetables, vegetarian, winter vegetables
I had a rutabaga sitting on my kitchen counter for almost two weeks. A friend had made rutabaga chips with curried mayo at our recent Cooking Club, and I bought the rutabaga with the intention of making chips out of it, but as the days and weeks passed, I knew I just had to use it up or it’d go bad. Same with the parsnip slowly losing it’s crisp in my fridge. It was now or never for these guys. I threw together a macaroni and cheese, subbing cubed and roasted root vegetables for half of the pasta. The result was a nice smoky, savory dish with the earthiness of the vegetables nicely balanced by the creaminess of the melted cheese. Top it with a little hot sauce, and it was outstanding.
Roasted Root Vegetable Macaroni & Cheese
2 large carrots, peeled and diced
1 large parsnip, peeled and diced
1 rutabaga, peeled and diced
8 oz dried pasta
1 tablespoon butter
2 cups shredded cheese (I used a mix of swiss, Gruyère, and cheddar)
2 cups reduced fat milk
3 tablespoons flour
1 small onion
Salt & pepper
Smoked paprika (optional, could sub cayenne pepper)
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
Pre-heat the oven to 400F. Start by roasting your vegetables. Peel and cube all of the veggies you are using. I used parsnip, rutabaga, and carrot, but you could also use celery root, sweet potato, squash, or other winter vegetables. Cut them up into even-sized pieces.
At this point, they looked like cheese cubes, and I kind of wished they were.
Put them in a large roasting pan, stir in a tablespoon or two of olive oil, liberally sprinkle with salt and pepper, and put them in the oven for about 30-40 minutes, or until tender. You’ll want to stir them up about halfway through the cooking time.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Boil your pasta when it is ready, just until it is al dente.
While the water is coming to a boil, start your cheese sauce. Dice an onion, and saute it in 1 tablespoon of butter for about 5 minutes. When it is soft, add the flour to the pan and stir it up. Slowly add the milk, whisking the whole time. Reduce heat to low, and keep it warm, stirring occasionally. After you put the pasta in the boiling water, add the cheese to the saucepan with the milk, onion, and flour. Stir the cheese in slowly. Add your spices now, too. Salt, pepper, smoked paprika, cayenne, thyme–anything you might like.
When everything is ready, drain the pasta, and add it to a large casserole dish along with the roasted vegetables.
Pour the cheese sauce on top, stir it up, and top with breadcrumbs and parmesan. Bake for about 20-30 minutes, or until the top has started to turn golden brown.