Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Cauliflower Mac and Cheese

When you have a craving for Mac and Cheese, you have to make it right away. But I didn't want to go for the boxed varieties with too many processed ingredients, names of many I wouldn't even be able to pronounce. Again a craving can be something that isn't too indulging. Ok, you could stop reading right now and think "why would you want to eat mac and cheese if it is skinny/healthy". I say, why not?! The cheese sauce I used here for mac and cheese has cauliflower in it with cottage cheese. Doing something good for your body while eating something you crave.. Win-Win!
Psst.. It is a good way to sneak vegetables in to your kids..
Serves - 4
Macaroni pasta, dry - 1 cup
Cauliflower florets - 1-1/2 cups
Water/Vegetable Stock - 1-1/2 cups
Cottage cheese - 1 cup
Cheddar cheese - 2 oz (60 g)
Parmesan cheese - 2 tbsp
Ground nutmeg - 1/8 tsp
Salt & pepper - to taste
Bread crumbs - 1/2 cup
Melted Butter - 1 tbsp
Preheat the oven to 375 F.
Cook the macaroni pasta in salted boiling water for about 7 minutes (that was 2 minutes less than the required time). Drain and set aside, covered. 
Mix 1 tbsp of grated parmesan cheese, bread crumbs and butter in a bowl.
Boil cauliflower in salted water for 5-7 minutes until soft. Scoop out the florets and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Reserve water. Puree in a blender/food processor until smooth, using the boiled water to thin out if needed. Add the cottage cheese and puree again. Return the cauliflower-cheese puree to the saucepan and add half of the reserved water. Add the cheddar cheese and allow it to melt in medium heat. Add nutmeg, salt and pepper. Curdling at this stage is normal because of cottage cheese. Allow the sauce to cool a bit and pulse a couple of times in the food processor. Mix 1 tbsp of parmesan cheese. Mix the pasta to the cheese sauce and pour into a large oven proof baking tray/bowl. Evenly spread the bread crumbs on top. Bake for 30 minutes.
If the top is browning too fast around 15 minutes, cover with foil and continue baking.


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