2 cups (8 oz.) elbow macaroni, uncooked
1 box (10 ozs.) frozen broccoli (or fresh)
2 Tbsps. margarine or butter
1/4 cup whole-wheat flour
Ground pepper to taste
2 1/2 cups skim milk
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 cup (4 oz.) shredded low-fat sharp cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cook the pasta according to package directions; drain. Cook the broccoli according to package directions; drain. In a large saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter or margarine. Blend in the flour and pepper, and gradually stir in the milk. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens and the mixture begins to boil. Add the cheese and stir until the cheese is melted. Stir in the drained pasta and broccoli, then pour into a 2-quart casserole. Bake 30 minutes or until bubbly. Serves six.
--Janet K. Little
Recipe revisions: To cut calories, saturated fat and cholesterol, Little -- a registered dietitian with a master's degree in public health -- and the Allentown Health Bureau dietitians substituted nonfat milk for whole milk, low-fat cheddar for some of the cheese, and reduced the amount of margarine or butter. Using all low-fat cheese would reduce the fat and calories even more. Using whole-wheat instead of white flour increases fiber and B vitamins. Eliminating salt from the recipe reduces its sodium content. "The broccoli gives it a nice light texture," says Little. Add any cooked vegetable of your choice to increase the nutrient and fiber content even more.
Special tips and serving suggestions: "You can assemble this dish in the morning and refrigerate it until baking it for dinner," says Little. A little wheat germ in the bottom of the casserole dish and a sprinkling on top adds a nice nutty flavor and crunchy texture, she adds.Copyright © 2015, CT Now