Saturday, August 25, 2012

Mac & Cheese ? Yes, please!

Whenever I feed Shelly something mushy or messy I have to tie her long, floppy, hairy ears into this babushka style, otherwise her ears get dirty and I have to give her a bath. Isn't she cute? :-)
Shelly loves pasta a every time I make some, she sits in the kitchen and stares at the boiling pasta and waits for me to drain it and give her some after I rinse hers under cold water. Unfortunately this pasta was wheat based and she cannot have wheat so she only got a piece of sweet potato instead of the pasta the night when I cooked this meal. I usually buy rice pasta, but this time I wanted to make an authentic Mac & Cheese so I got the regular elbow macaroni pasta. I made this dish the night before my raw detox/juice fast week. This recipe was inspired by Roxane's Natural Kitchen blog . Roxane made a beautiful coconut milk cheese sauce using coconut milk and sweet potatoes so I decided to adapt her recipe and make it lower fat, with no added oils and with some other major changes. You can make the whole recipe gluten-free if you use gluten-free pasta. I am going to make this Mac & Cheese very soon again since it was mind blowing!
I swapped fresh onion and garlic for powdered versions, I omitted olive oil, bay leaf, tomato sauce, mustard and I used light coconut milk instead of regular. I also added nutritional yeast for cheesy flavor. Enjoy!

Mac & Cheese

1/2 box elbow macaroni (around 8oz) or your favorite pasta, dry
1 large sweet potato, baked or cooked (peeled and mashed)
1 14-oz can light coconut milk
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
1/8 tsp white pepper (or try black pepper)

Cook the pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, bring coconut milk to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add mashed sweet potatoes, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Simmer 5 minutes. Whisk in nutritional yeast and cook 3 minutes, or until the sauce thickens. Puree the sauce in a blender, or inside the saucepan using an immersion blender. Pour sauce over pasta and stir gently until well mixed.

I cooked the pasta longer to achieve softer, mushier consistency. To cook sweet potato fast, pierce it several times with fork, gently wrap in a paper towel and cook in the microwave oven for 5-9 minutes, or until soft. Peel and mash with fork.