Monday, March 04, 2013

Lighter Mac, Cheese, & Broccoli

I finally decided recently that it was time (yup, almost a year later) to ditch the baby/breastfeeding weight I've been carrying around. Thanks to Dietbet and a competitive streak I didn't know I had, it's going really well. I know myself, and in order for my healthy kick to be sustainable, I can't feel deprived. So I've been looking for recipes that are lighter versions of my richer favorites. This one, from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food, is obscenely delicious. You'd never know it wasn't 100% full of fat. The addition of my favorite veggie, broccoli, is an extra bonus.

Don't forget to toast your panko in a dry pan over high heat while the mac is baking!

Mac & Cheese

Lighter Mac, Cheese, & Broccoli
Adapted from Martha Stewart's Everyday Food
Makes 4-6 servings

Salt and pepper
1/2 pound short tubular pasta, such as cavatappi
2 cups broccoli, cut into florets, stalks peeled and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small yellow onion, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
5 ounces Neufchatel cheese
3 cups 1% milk
1 1/4 cups grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese (5 ounces)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (2 ounces)
1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs, toasted

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta 3 minutes less than package instructions. Add broccoli and cook 3 minutes more. Drain.
2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large pan over medium-high. Add onion, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and ground mustard. Saute until onion is translucent, about 4 minutes. Add flour and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add Neufchatel, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring until melted and incorporated (Amy's note: I thought I was doing something wrong at this stage, it just felt wrong. But it will eventually melt and incorporate into the onions).

3. Gradually whisk in milk, then bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in cheddar and Parmesan, then add pasta and broccoli. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Transfer to an 8-inch square baking dish and bake until bubbling in center, about 25 minutes. Sprinkle with panko, and serve.

1 comment:

Kat said...

Too funny. I was just looking at another recipe that used fake eggs, fake butter, fake milk, and fake sugar, wondering how to put that poor recipe back to rights. I stroll over here and find another recurred-fat recipe. Is the world trying to say something?

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