Mac ‘n cheese with roasted vegetables


Boost the flavour of a family favourite!

In my home, nothing says comfort food better than homemade macaroni and cheese. It is our favourite Meatless Monday meal! I had a surplus of fresh produce from the Farmers’ Market this week so decided to add some roasted vegetables to this week’s edition of mac ‘n cheese and it was a big hit. Next time I think I’ll try adding in a few more vegetables – roasted squash or cauliflower would be really great flavour boosters, I think.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (250 mL) small mushrooms, halved
  • 1 cup (250 mL) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup (250 mL) chopped onion
  • 1 tablespoon (15 mL) olive oil
  • 2 cups (500 mL) small pasta (macaroni or shells are great)
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) butter
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups (500 mL) milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) smoked or regular paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 cups (500 mL) grated extra old white cheddar
  • 1 cup (250 mL) fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) chopped fresh basil leaves

Method

  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Put mushrooms, tomatoes and onions in a bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and toss gently to coat. Spread vegetables out on prepared baking sheet and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes.
  • While vegetables are roasting, make cheese sauce:  Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat; stir in flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
  • Gradually whisk in milk, paprika and a dash of salt & pepper.
  • Simmer, stirring often, for 4 minutes, until smooth and thickened. Stir in the grated cheese until blended. Let simmer on low for 3 more minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • While cheese sauce is simmering, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add pasta. Cook until just tender then drain and add to a 2 quart (1.9 L) oven-safe dish.
  • Prepare topping in a small bowl by combining breadcrumbs, garlic powder and and 2 tablespoons melted butter. Set aside.
  • Pour the cheese sauce over the cooked noodles in the baking dish. Sprinkle roasted vegetables on top, followed by chopped basil and breadcrumb topping.
  • Bake for 10 – 15 minutes until the breadcrumbs are browned & cheese sauce is bubbly.

Serves 4.

About Paula Roy

Welcome to my kitchen! I play with words and with food. I love simple dishes prepared with passion and am always seeking to find new methods to make food as fun and flavourful as possible. I'm also an enthusiastic explorer of faraway lands and cuisines.
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