Summer Vegetable Macaroni and Cheese

summer vegetable macaroni and cheeseTo all the stores carrying sweaters already and anyone else who won't stop talking about how "summer's over," I'd like to remind you it's not technically over until the autumnal equinox on September 23. Still, I guess if you go by the school year or Labor Day, it feels like we have only nanoseconds until we have to say goodbye to the best season of the year. Sniff, sniff.

Hence why we really need to buckle down and enjoy the remaining days of summer with some delicious, seasonal dishes, like this dinner recipe for Summer Vegetable Macaroni and Cheese. First of all, you cannot go wrong with summer veggies that are still in season and totally bountiful! And who doesn't love mac 'n' cheese? (Even if you're vegan or lactose-intolerant, you can make it work for you with the right substitutes.) 

Check it out ...

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Summer Vegetable Macaroni and Cheese from EzraPoundCake.com via Tammy Algood's The Complete Southern Cookbook

Ingredients

  • 1 (8-ounce) package elbow macaroni

Veggies:

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 cup chopped fresh broccoli
  • 1 cup chopped yellow squash
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1 small red onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

Cheese sauce:

  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper OR a splash of hot sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups extra-sharp Cheddar, grated
  • 1/2 cup Monterey Jack cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese

Toppings:

  • 3 Roma tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons dry seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Cook the macaroni according to the package directions. Drain, cover, and set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9 x 13-inch baking dish, and set aside.
  3. Place a Dutch oven over medium heat, and add the oil and butter.
  4. When the butter is melted, add the broccoli, squash, carrots, onion, pepper, and garlic. Sauté for 4 to 5 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
  5. Remove the vegetables from the heat, and stir in the macaroni. Set aside.
  6. To make the sauce: Whisk together the eggs, milk, mustard, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Pour over the macaroni mixture, and add the Cheddar, Monterey Jack, and ricotta. Gently stir to evenly coat. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary.
  7. Transfer mixture to the prepared baking dish.
  8. Top with the tomatoes.
  9. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs and Parmesan over the top.
  10. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes before serving warm.

Recipe makes 8 servings.


Image via Steven Depolo/Flickr

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