Cajun Mac n Cheese with Roast Butternut Squash

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We are five weeks out from the Deep South pop up weekend people! In honour of this momentous (!) occasion, here is the recipe for the mac n cheese deliciousness that I’ll be serving up (that just happens to be gluten-free too). Comfortingly cheesy, with sweetness and crunch, I’m pretty sure this will be a winner at the pop up. Hope to see some of you there! Tickets in the bio for the 25th/26th May. Enjoy the sun and this feast of a meal in the meantime.
Takes 45 minutes, makes 4 work lunches

INGREDIENTS
1 butternut squash, de-seeded and cubed
250g Macaroni pasta
40g Butter
40g Gluten-free flour
600ml semi-skimmed milk
300g Mature cheddar cheese, cut into cubes
Dijon mustard
Cajun seasoning (I like @schwartz.uk blend)
100g gluten-free breadcrumbs
1 clove of garlic
1 teaspoon dried thyme
Zest of 1 lemon
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

METHOD
1) Pre-heat your oven to 200C. Lay the butternut squash on a baking tray, sprinkle over some Cajun seasoning and olive oil. Toss and roast for 20 minutes until soft.
2) In a blender, blitz the breadcrumbs, thyme, lemon zest, garlic, a teaspoon of Cajun seasoning and olive oil. Toast the breadcrumb mixture in a dry frying pan until crunchy (and not burnt!). 3) Put a saucepan on a low heat and melt the butter. Add the flour, and cook out for a couple of minutes, stirring regularly. Add the milk, a little bit at a time, stirring frequently so you don’t get lumps. Once all the milk is combined, season with salt, pepper and a big spoonful of Dijon mustard. Start adding the cheese, a little at a time, until all is combined.
4) Finally, in a deep pan cook the macaroni in salted boiling water. Cook according to the packet’s instructions, until just al dente. Drain, reserving a bit of the pasta water.
5) To serve, fold the macaroni into the cheese sauce and plate up. Top with the roasted butternut squash and a generous sprinkle of toasted breadcrumbs.

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