The following is a melding of a Paula Deen Creamy Mac N Cheese recipe (courtesy of DC Urban Moms), Mighty Appetite's Hold-the-Velveeta-Queso Recipe, and GreenBean's suggestion to add pureed pumpkin to my kids' m + c.
Cheezy Sauce Ingredients
1 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 cups heavy cream
8 ounces Monterey jack cheese, shredded
3 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
salt to taste
In a medium saucepan, add butter and allow to melt over low heat. Add flour and stir until it is well integrated with butter and mixture is free of lumps. Color will be golden after 1 minute or so. Add cream and stir to combine, allowing to heat up until thickened, about five minutes. Stir frequently with spoon and do not allow cream to boil. Add cheese, and whisk vigorously until completely integrated and fluid. Taste for salt and add accordingly.
Crock Pot Pumpkin Mac Ingredients
4 cups uncooked elbow macaroni (a 16-ounce box is pretty close)
4 eggs, beaten
1 cup sour cream
2-3 cups pureed pumpkin
Cheezy sauce recipe from above
1 teaspoon salt
1 ½ cup whole milk
1 teaspoon dry mustard
Boil the macaroni in a 2 quart saucepan in plenty of water until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain. Make queso. Stir in sour cream, salt, mustard, and pumpkin. In a slow cooker, combine drained macaroni and queso and stir. Add eggs and milk and stir again. Set the slow cooker on low setting and cook for 3 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Puree the pumpkin ahead of time.
- Use whole wheat macaroni elbows (Safeway and Bionaturae make them).
- Makes a ton (note the # servings).
- Sort of pumpkin soufflé-y. What I am really trying to recreate is Amy's frozen mac n cheese which has a really velvety sauce. I may skip the crock pot step and the eggs and see if I can approximate that addictive mouthfeel for the younguns.
- Would not cook for longer than 3 hours if going crockpot route (maybe a bit less? Try 2 hrs next time.)
- Freezes decently.