Today, still no detox on the blog, it's been cold, it's been raining so here is some comfort food! If you're living in the US, you're most than familiar with mac n' cheese but in France and other countries, this is not something common. As its name says, it's made of macaroni, bechamel sauce and melting cheese such as cheddar, diet oriented as you can see. 😁 I only tasted it once while I was an exchange student in the US and as most homes enjoy it, it was canned and not good at all to me!
When home made, it's still not a light dish but it's simple to make and it tastes better. Here, it's a different version I wanted to share to enjoy squashes. I kept the pasta - changed the macaroni for other pasta for sauce - that are full of carbs if made out of wheat but there again, good pasta from time to time , in a reasonable quantity, it feels good.
As we say, it's the garnish that counts, here, not giant quantity of melting cheese, the sauce is made of a seasonal vegetable: pumpkin. Then, add some milk (soy for me), nutritional yeast to give this cheesy flavor, starch to thicken he sauce and spices to season. With some parmesan (vegan or not), it makes a delicious dish that you can enjoy with some other seasonal veggies.
If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen an express version I had shared live in stories with spinach. I had since worked on the sauce and ate this final on with cooked brocoli. I took the pumpkin pie spices idea from Dana Minimalist Baker, I often uses this home made mix in desserts but never thought of adding some in a savory dish, it was a great discovery, I loved it!
And if you have children, a spouse or a roommate who's not a fan of vegetables - poor them - it's a good hidden way to make them taste some. If you want to change or don't like pumpkin, you can still try this cauliflower, broccoli macaroni vegan casserole, but there, vegetables are not hidden, you got to like them. 😆 if you also like creamy dishes, I suggest you to try this lemon pasta like a risotto. 🍋 And if you like squashes and prefer real risotto, I'm sure you'll like this rosemary roasted butternut one.
Before leaving you with the recipe, I hope you like soups because there will be a new one online already soon, well, as I said, it's cold, it's grey, it's raining here, we need to warm us up and hydrate our bodies with good and healthy food!
Vegan pumpkin mac n' cheese
Prep time : 5 minutes
Cooking time : 25 minutes or more depending of the way you'll cook the pumpkin
Serving : 2
- 130 g / 4,60 oz pasta for sauce (like pasta shells, macaroni, penne, fusilli...)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 250 g / 8,80 oz pumpkin (fresh, frozen or canned)
- 120 à 150 ml / 4 to 5 fl. oz / 1/2 to 2/3 cup milk of your choice
- 1 tsp corn starch
- 2 to 3 tbsp nutritional yeast, or more to taste
- 2 c. à soupe de parmesan (vegetarian version here)
- pumpkin pie spice mix, to taste (recipe here)
- salt, pepper
- tamari soy sauce (optional)
- About pumpkin, when I need a little like here, I used frozen cubes - we don't have canned in France - I cook it for a few minutes with olive oil in a covered saucepan for about 5 to 7 minutes on medium heat, until tender. If you use fresh pumpkin, don't peel it and slice/dice it and cook in the oven for about 40 minutes at 180°C/ 350°F or in salty boiling water for about 20 minutes.
- Cook the pasta as written on the package, drain, add a dash of olive oil and keep aside.
- If you have a little food processor, pour all the following ingredients into the bowl or a long and thin container if you'r using a hand mixer : cooked pumpkin, 120 ml / 4 fl. oz / 1/2 cup milk to begin, starch, yeast, parmesan, spices, salt and pepper and blend.
- If needed and according to your taste, add a little more milk until the consistency suits you, add some more yeast to make the sauce more cheesy.
- When the sauce it okay for you, stir it with the pasta into the saucepan and heat on medium for a few minutes. I didn't add salt afterwards, I preferred to try tamari soy sauce and I loved it! I hope you'll like this recipe as much as I did. 😉
💪 Approximative nutritional information (for 1 with soy milk and vegan home made parmesan): 347 kcal (58 g carbs ; 16 g proteins ; 4 g fat)
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