- March 2012
- Serves 4
- Takes 10 minutes to make, 35 minutes to cook
Pasta covered in a creamy cheesy sauce you say? There’s not a lot to not love about a rib-sticking macaroni cheese that’s thought to have its origins sometime in the 14th century. Our version contains two cheeses, gruyère and cheddar, with extra flavour from mustard and parsley to give this old favourite an up-to-date flavour makeover.
When you’ve mastered the (very easy) basics, you can make it your own by adding veg if you like (spinach can work well for example) or topping with some crisp rashers of bacon.
- 24g (14.2g saturated)
- 79.5g (6.7g sugars)
- 400g macaroni
- 25g unsalted butter
- 25g plain flour
- 400ml whole milk
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- 75g Cheddar, grated
- 75g Gruyère, grated, plus extra for topping
- Bunch of fresh parsley, finely chopped
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/ gas 4. Cook the pasta in a large pan of boiling salted water for 8-10 minutes until almost cooked. Drain the pasta, reserving 2 tbsp cooking water. Return the pasta to the pan and stir through the reserved water. Set aside.
- Meanwhile melt the butter in a pan, add the flour and cook for 2 minutes. Gradually stir in the milk, making a thick white sauce. Season, then add the mustard, cheeses and parsley.
- Mix the cheese sauce with the pasta, then spoon into a 1.5 litre ovenproof dish. Top with the extra Gruyère, then bake for 20-25 minutes until golden. Rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Next time try using a blue cheese such as Gorgonzola instead of Cheddar, or Pecorino or Manchego instead of Gruyère. Or try adding tiny fried chunks of chorizo and wilted baby spinach to the cooked pasta. Top with cheese, then bake.
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