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Cauliflower Mac N Cheese

Posted Feb 07 2012 6:00am

We've discovered a macaroni and cheese revolution.

It all began when I set out to fix the cauliflower Mac and cheese recipe from the most recent Vegetarian Times magazine, but after I'd made the cheese sauce and stirred in the steamed cauliflower I discovered that the ratio of cheese sauce to cauliflower was waaaaaay off...

Instead of something resembling a casserole, I had... A soup. A lovely cauliflower and cheese soup. Delicious, but not exactly what I'd had in mind.

The answer? Add pasta! In a flash, the dish went from a light side dish to a hearty main course. The addition of cauliflower to Mac n cheese is truly inspired - the cauliflower added a delightful textural dimension, and just the tiniest bit of tang to lighten up the rich cheese sauce. And the greatest praise of all... Zach has finally been converted to vegetables in his macaroni and cheese.

Cauliflower Mac N Cheese

(Adapted from Vegetarian Times January/February 2012)

1 large head cauliflower, cut into florets
2 T SmartBalance Light
3 T flour
2 cups 2% milk
1 tsp garlic powder
1 cup vegetable broth
2 cups grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1 pinch cayenne pepper
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
1 box whole wheat pasta, cooked according to package directions

~ Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 13X9" baking dish with cooking spray.
~ Steam the cauliflower in a stovetop or microwave steamer until tender.
~ Melt the SmartBalance light in a saucepan over medium heat.
~ Whisk in the flour, stirring constantly for 1 minute.
~ Whisk in the milk, garlic powder, and broth and stir constantly for 10 minutes until the sauce is thickened.
~ Remove from the heat, and stir in the cheeses, cayenne pepper, and eggs until the cheese is melted.
~ Fold in the cauliflower.
~ Spread the mixture in the baking dish, and sprinkle the breadcrumbs on top.
~ Spray the breadcrumbs with cooking spray.
~ Bake for 10 minutes - until the sauce is bubbling and the breadcrumbs are toasted.
~ Serve over pasta!

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