Saturday, May 21, 2011

MIRACLE MACARONI (AND CHEESE)

What kid doesn’t like mac n’ cheese? Well, this one is super creamy with a cheese sauce that everyone will love. You might love it so much that you slather it over other things as well. The ‘miracle’ in this recipe is that it has a good amount of veggies snuck into it. Parsnips, when steamed and pureed, are a great addition to almost any sauce. What’s so great about parsnips, with their slightly sweet taste and a texture that can be made soft, crispy and everything in between? Well, for starters, they are a great source of fiber, and they are a surprising source of folic acid and vitamin B. Who would have thought? My picture below isn’t quite as pretty as it could be – I had a mish mash of pasta that I needed to use up. If you want your kids to be completely sold, stick to elbow macaroni and cheddar cheese – it will look like the stuff in the box, only cheesier!

I asked my son if he was ready for dinner. He said "No." I then put the mac n' cheese in front of him and asked him about five times if he liked it. He was too busy eating to answer. I guess that's my answer!

Ingredients:
14 oz. macaroni noodles
1 large parsnip, peeled and cubed (about 1 cup)
2 cups of cheese, shredded (you choose – I was cleaning out the fridge and found 3 types: mozzarella, white cheddar and Monterey Jack)
3 Tbs. butter
2 tsp. prepared yellow mustard
1 tsp. smoked paprika
½ tsp. salt
2 cups milk
6 oz. plain Greek yogurt
2 Tbs. flour

Directions:
Cook pasta according to package directions. Place parsnips in sauce pan and cover with water. Cook over high heat. Bring to boil and let boil for 10 minutes, or until soft. Drain. Place parsnips, 1 cup of milk and yogurt into a blender and blend until absolutely smooth. In medium sauce pan, heat butter over medium high heat until melted. Add flour and paprika and cook (stirring constantly) until flour completely dissolved and just starting to thicken, about 2-3 minutes. Add remaining milk, parsnip mixture and salt. Stir constantly until mixture thickens, about 5-8 minutes. Add cheese and cook until completely melted. Remove from heat and stir in noodles. That’s it!


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