While the French are celebrating Bastille Day, our American friends have a far yummier fête going on: National Mac and Cheese Day! I’m such a sucker for pasta, and when it hosts a creamy cheesy sauce – with extra cheese – I’m as happy as can be.
My contribution for this family-friendly day of pasta comes in the form of rigatoni covered in a creamy feta cheese sauce with pulled chicken for the meat component and topped with butternut cubes sweetened with honey. This sweet and salty combo makes for a true party in your mouth. Also, it contains a vegetable so it has to be healthy, right?
300 g rigatoni pasta
4 chicken breasts
250 g butternut, cubed
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon thyme
100 g feta cheese
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter
400 ml milk
- Arrange the butternut in an ovenproof dish and drizzle the honey over it with the thyme. Roast the butternut at 180 degrees for about 30 minutes, depending on how big your cubes are.
- Place the chicken in a separate ovenproof dish and add salt and pepper to taste. Cook at 180 degrees for 30 minutes. Pull the chicken apart using two forks.
- Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling water. Just before it’s completely cooked, drain and set aside.
- In a saucepan, mix the butter and flour into a paste over a medium heat. Gradually add milk while continuously stirring. Beware of lumps.
- When the sauce is thick and starts boiling, add the feta and mix with the pasta. Add the chicken and butternut.
- Add more feta cheese when serving.