If you are trying to go the healthy route with some Thanksgiving dishes this year, this dish needs to be on your menu. It has bold, rich flavors without all the horribleness that comes with traditional mac and cheese. You’ll love it!
- 1 tbsp. Earth Balance or other vegan butter substitute
- 1 clove garlic, smashed
- 8 -10 sage leaves
- 1/4 c panko breadcrumbs
- sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 2 c cubed butternut squash
- 1 lb dried whole wheat macaroni .25 cup cashews, soaked in hot water for 1 hour and drained
- 1 1/2 c organic unsweetened almond milk
- 2 tbsp. Earth Balance or other vegan butter substitute
- 2 tbsp. all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt
- 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
- 2 -3 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
- 1 clove garlic, grated
- 1/8 tsp. cayenne
- 1/4 tsp. ground mustard seed
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F and add the squash in a steamer basket over a pot of boiling water. Steam for about 15-20 minutes and then remove from the heat. Transfer squash to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.
- Boil the macaroni pasta in a pot of salted water until it is al dente. Strain and set aside.
- Warm 1 tablespoon of Earth Balance in a small pan over medium heat. Add the sage and garlic and cook until the sage gets crispy (about 2 minutes). Remove sage leaves and set on paper towels. Add the panko breadcrumbs to the pan and season with sea salt. Cook for about 3 minutes, crumple the sage leaves, and add them back to the pan.
- For the cashew béchamel, blend the soaked cashews and 1/2 cup almond milk in a food processor until you get a smooth mixture. Melt 2 tablespoons of Earth Balance in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and cook until it is golden brown. Add the blended cashews and the rest of the ingredients in slowly, letting the mixture thicken for about 5 minutes.
- Once you remove the cashew béchamel from the heat, fold in the butternut puree and mix well. Add the pasta to the mix and spoon into a 9"x9" baking dish. Sprinkle the top with the panko mixture and bake for about 20 minutes.