Monday, October 10, 2011

Veganmofo V: Autumn Mac-N-Cheeze

So once upon a time a brilliant Mac-N-Cheeze recipe appeared on my mofo feed using butternut squash. Better still, it used all the other ingredients I have laying around the apartment. It was calling my name and unlike the majority of things my greedy mofo-eyes started bookmarking for later, it wouldn't require I get up, put on pants and drag myself to the grocery store or market.
 Hurrah! I had a butternut squash in the fridge that was planned for AFR's Coconut Squash rice, but the stem had started going funky on me, so I roasted that sucker and cut off all the questionable chunks of skin just to be safe.

For those of you who don't know there are a variety of schools of thought on the Squash roasting process, to make things simple, I'm going to give you mine:

Lazy Woman's Guide to Roasting All Large and Orange Things:
  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. Cover your baking tray in a silapat or tinfoil (or lightly grease it, sugars can get messy as they cook)
  3. Take a sharp knife and carefully slice your squash/pumpkin in half length wise. I also cut off the bit with the stem, but mine was starting to go bad.
  4. Remove pulp/seeds. (Optional: put seeds aside for roasting later)
  5. Lightly coat cut side of squash in olive oil and place cut side up on the baking sheet.
  6. Place squash in oven for approximately 30 minutes.
  7. Flip the squash over and return for another 30 minutes or until a fork easily peirces the squash
You can then slice, scoop or eat as is. I find it easier to scoop out the flesh and leave the skin intact, it also saves copious amounts of peeling/chopping while the squash is hard and resistant.

Anyway, time went on and I finally decided that I had eaten enough leftovers to warrant making myself some Mac. But suddenly, the original post was not in my feed, it wasn't stared or showing up when I search. Distraught, I found a few other tasty looking offerings but they were not the same. Thankfully a few google searches later I had found it On Raw for 10$ a day! (link to recipe).

Now  despite having everything I need right there, I did make a few changes for one I used my blender (which proved to be a  bit of a hassle) instead of a food processors. Actually, in my usual fashion I bastardized the poor recipe to death.

Complete list of changes made
  • Used blender instead of food processor
  • As such only used 1/2 of squash and closer to 3/4 cups of almond milk
  • Apparently forgot about the lemon juice all together (whoops)
  • Used Earth Balance
  • Took some panko/Earth balance and toasted them together in my skillet
  • Blended sauce, added it to a mixture of Gluten Free Rice Macaroni and steamed kale
  • Topped with toasted bread crumbs and paprika/chili powder
  • Baked for 20 minutes covered at 350, removed cover and baked for 10 more minutes
So for this version you will need (original recipe from Raw on 10$ a Day Here)
  • 1/2 roasted squash, skin removed
  • 3/4 cups almond milk
  • 4 tablespoons Nooch
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons earth balance
  • 1 tsp garlic, 1 tsp onion powder, 
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 1 tbps parika and 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 cup panko
  • 2 more tablespoonsof earth balance
  • 1/2 pack of rice-macaroni
  • 1/2 bunch of kale
Preheat oven to 350 and bring a pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta as directed on box, chop kale and add to a steamer basket above your pasta. Blend the first 7 ingredients in your blender/food processor until smooth. Stir it a few times to be sure.

Once pasta/kale is done, drain liquid and rinse under cold water. Dump pasta/kale into casserole dish and toss together with sauce until everything is evenly coated.
Pre-heat your cast iron skillet and melt 2 tbsp of Earth Balance, add your panko and toss until evenly browned.
Add these to the top of the Mac-N-Cheeze sprinkled with paprika and chili powder. Cover with lid and bake for 20 minutes until sauce is bubbly. Remove cover and turn to 400 to crisp top (approximately 10 minutes).
Eat with salt, pepper and hot sauce!

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