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I know most recipes like this go for the Mac ‘n’ Cheese title, but I’m Old Skool. It’s always been Macaroni Cheese to me. A lot of recipes tend to use penne pasta, which baffles me a bit. Shouldn’t it be called Pen ‘n’ Cheese then? Not got quite the same ring to it. This Pumpkin Macaroni Cheese uses macaroni, for obvious reasons!
I’ve Hallowe’ened (not sure if that’s a word, but it should be) this Pumpkin Macaroni Cheese up a bit with Pumpkin Puree. The recipe for this is also on here, or you can buy it in cans, although it’s hard to find in the supermarkets and, if you are carving pumpkins anyway, you might as well use it to make a gorgeous meal too.
The pumpkin adds that lovely sweet taste to the silky cheese sauce and the Dijon Mustard gives it a slight kick.
Mustard and cheese are a match made in heaven. I have fond memories of my dad making me cheese and mustard sandwiches for lunch on a Saturday. His culinary skills were not vast, but this was a winner for me as a teenager.
The sage and garlic leave a lovely taste after each mouthful.
What Goes Well With This?
Serve this with a mountain of broccoli, peas or spinach and asparagus would also go well. Pile up your plate with green veg. The more the merrier.
The white sauce creation can be tricky to perfect. I find using a wooden spoon initially breaks down the butter/flour paste and then use a whisk to smooth it out even more. It also doubles up as a workout to tone your arms.
- 200 g Dried Macaroni
- 25 g Butter
- 25 g Plain Flour
- 500 ml Semi-Skimmed Milk
- 350 g Pumpkin Puree
- 90 g Mature Cheddar Cheese
- 4 Cloves Garlic
- 2 tsp Dried Sage
- 1 tsp Dijon Mustard
- Sea Salt
- Black Pepper
- BEFORE YOU START: *** This recipe uses Pumpkin Puree from the Pumpkin Puree recipe. You could use shop bought Pumpkin Puree, but it may affect the taste ***
- Set the oven to Gas Mark 6 or 200C.
- Lightly grease a 29cm x 21cm ceramic dish (or as close to this as you can get).
- Cook 200g Dried Macaroni according to instructions on the packet (usually about 10 minutes from boiling).
- Finely grate 90g Mature Cheddar Cheese. Split it into a 70g portion and a 20g portion.
- Peel and crush 4 Cloves of Garlic.
- Melt 25g Butter in a large pan on a low heat.
- Add 25g Plain Flour to the Butter and stir the two together for about 5 minutes until they form a paste (roux).
- Slowly add about 1/4 of the 500ml of Semi-Skimmed Milk to the roux and whisk the roux and Milk. Try to whisk away as many lumps as possible before adding more milk. Once all the Milk has been added, keep whisking for about 5 minutes to reduce any lumps and to allow the white sauce to thicken.
- Add 350g Pumpkin Puree to the white sauce and whisk to blend it into the sauce.
- Add the 70g of the 90g portion of grated Cheddar Cheese and stir until it has melted into the sauce.
- Add 4 Cloves of Crushed Garlic, 2 tsp Sage, 1 tsp Dijon Mustard and Sea Salt and Black Pepper to taste.
- Add the cooked Macaroni to the sauce and mix well.
- Transfer the mixture to the ceramic dish.
- Sprinkle the 20g portion of the grated Cheese on top.
- Bake in the middle of the oven for 25 minutes.