Smokey Pumpkin Mac and Cheese Recipe

Personal Chef Austin Texas

Smokey Pumpkin Mac & 4 Cheese Recipe
I love smoked Gouda cheese and I love my mac and cheese, so I wanted to figure out a way to incorporate that with the flavors of fall. I know that there are many different recipes for mac and cheese and there is probably room for a gazillion more. But I love the flavor profile of this one I have created and it is very different and unique in my opinion. This is truly a gourmet mac and cheese Texas style. We love our chipotle peppers and bold smokey flavor profiles in general, here in Texas. I have added an ingredient that you can swap out if you do not want the spicy kick but still want the smokey flavor profile to boost up that smokey Gouda cheese! YUMMMMAAAAAAAY!

12 ounces Barilla rotini pasta
2 cups of milk, you can use skim, or 2% if you like
1 1/4 cups canned pure pumpkin
1 cup of shredded sharp cheddar
3/4 cup shredded smoked Gouda cheese
3 ounces cream cheese
2 T butter
2 T flour
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp sugar, if you want a little sweetness. This can be omitted if you wish
1/4 tsp of chipotle powder if you want some spice, or 1/2 tsp smoked paprika to get that smokey flavor
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/8 tsp nutmeg

Topping: Bread Topping: Combine the breadcrumbs, oil, dry herbs and salt together in a small bowl.
1/2 cup fresh whole wheat breadcrumbs
1 Tablespoon of Parmesan grated cheese
1 Tablespoon of olive, or canola oil
1/4 tsp of dry basil
1/4 tsp of dried oregano
1/8 tsp salt

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the rotini pasta. Cook according to package directions until al dente. Drain and save some of the pasta water in case you need to thin out your sauce a little.

While your pasta is cooking/working, you will start your Roux. Start by melting the butter over low heat in a medium saucepan. After the butter has melted, add the flour and stir together for a few minutes until you start to smell a nutty flavor, and it will be a very light tan color. Add the milk and whisk the mixture until the flour is thoroughly mixed. Bring to a simmer, stir until the liquid has started to thicken. Add in the pumpkin, salt, pepper, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, sugar and your chipotle powder or your smoked paprika and give it a quick stir. Then add in all the cheeses and stir until cheese is melted into a sauce consistency. If there is not enough liquid you can add a small amount of the left over pasta water as needed to adjust the consistency. Add pasta to your sauce pan and mix gently to coat the pasta.

Add to a large type of baking dish, or individual serving dishes. Add the bread crumbs and Parmesan topping and bake under the broiler for about 3-5 minutes or until golden brown. Remove and serve immediately.

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