I love balance. Balance is a key to your success.
There are just a few examples how you can introduce balance in your life.
If you happened to have a sweet tooth, there’s no need to give up on your favorite desserts. Just spend a bit more of the planned time in the gym or have an hour walk (or even less) and that large bowl of ice cream you might have eaten yesterday won’t hurt you.
That’s not necessary to eat only salads and veggies. Have a bowl of your favorite pasta or some pork once in a while. Just balance it out with a lovely salad.
Or let’s say you have been eating the chocolate every evening for a few days in a row. Take a break – eat some ice cream instead of this chocolate. This is kind of balancing out as well. Well, quite a peculiar way.
Or you are that a weird dude (It’s a fictitious character. There’s no such a person known to the author. Any resemblance to an actual person is entirely coincidental) who has been incorporating a lot of lavender in every meal recently. You’ve got to balance this out. For instance, you can add less lavender than usual or put in just in every other meal.
Even blogging is about balancing. I don’t like posting the similar recipes in sequence. Thus, you will unlikely see 3 pasta or 5 dessert recipes on one page. You may or may not find a dozen of lavender recipes, though. But anything related to lavender doesn’t count.
However, the next few weeks at HavocInThekitchen are going to be different. What the Christmas time is about? Right! Cookies, eggnog, and other sweet treats. Because Christmas is about indulgence and a bit less of balancing out.
So basically, I am apologizing for those remaining weeks cause they’re going to be extremely luscious on here. I’ve got already 3 new lovely recipes, and I’m not going to stop. I will stop after January, 2 which is Andrey’s Birthday. I mean, I cannot leave him without a dessert, can I? Besides, he has already chosen one – Nanaimo Bars.
Since you may not see any decent real food these days, I’d love you enjoy this scrumptious Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese. Ouch, sorry for posting the second pumpkin recipe in a row (Here you can find Butternut Squash Risotto). Pumpkins don’t count either.
I hope this yumalicious pasta doesn’t look inappropriate in the mid of December. The pumpkin season isn’t fully over yet, right? Besides, this Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese generously jazzed up with the smoked cheddar, smoked paprika, sage, and thyme is so irresistibly gooey and rich. Did I mention bacon?
So while this pasta might not be the dish you anticipate to see this time of year, it’s the perfect comfort meal. And don’t forget we need the balance. I mean, put those cookies you’re hiding behind your back away and grab a fork. It’s the time for some real stuff.
How many cookies have you already baked? Are you going to balance them out with ice cream?
Smoked Cheddar, smoked paprika, chicken bacon, and sage are combined to make this scrumptious and rich Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese.
- 4 cups cooked pasta (al dente)
- 1 cup smoked cheddar, grated + additional cheese for the top
- 1,5 cups homemade (or canned) butternut squash or pumpkin puree
- 4-5 strips of chicken bacon, sliced
- 2 tablespoons fresh sage
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
- salt to taste
- 1 small butternut squash
- 1 small garlic head
- pinch of dry sage
- salt to taste
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 cup light cream (optional)
- Preheat oven to 190 degrees C. Place the butternut squash and garlic to a baking dish and bake for about 45-60 minutes or until a fork easily goes through the pumpkin skin.
- Scoop out 2 cups of the flash, add the baked garlic to taste (just squeeze it and throw away the skins. I added 5 gloves, Since it has been nicely baked, it's sweet and not overpowering), pinch of salt, and smoked paprika. Process in the blender until smooth and nice. Add the cream if desired and if the puree is too thick. Keep the remaining puree in the fridge.
- In a meanwhile, cook the bacon as recommended on the package, 4-6 minutes.
- Mix the cooked pasta, cheddar, pumpkin pure, sage, and cooked bacon. Transfer the mixture to a baking dish. Bake for about 15 minutes to 185-190 degrees C (370-380 degrees F).
- Sprinkle with a handful of the additional cheese and let it nicely melt down and turn golden for about 5 minutes then 2-3 minutes under the grill.