Pasta bake

My friend Lené Meadon regularly makes this pasta dish, with or without the potato crisp topping. It’s one of my favourites!

Serves 6

Preparation time: 30 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

Oven temperature: 200°C

• 250 g streaky bacon, chopped

• 400 g mixed mushrooms, chopped

• 30 ml butter

• 1 small onion, finely chopped

• 1 clove garlic, finely chopped

• 30 ml flour

• 350 ml milk, hot

• 125 ml cream

• 5 ml each Dijon and wholegrain mustard

• nutmeg

• 2 egg yolks

• 250 ml grated white cheddar

• 500 g rigatoni or penne pasta, cooked al dente and refreshed in cold water

• 1 packet (125 g) cheese and onion crisps, crumbled

• 125 ml finely grated Parmesan

1 Fry the bacon until crispy without adding any extra oil. Remove and set aside. Fry the mushrooms in the bacon fat until browned then remove. Heat the butter in the pan and sauté the onion and garlic until glossy.

2 Remove the pan from the heat and whisk the flour into the butter mixture. Cook for 30 seconds. Remove from the heat and gradually whisk in the milk to form a white sauce. Put the pan back on the heat and cook for 3 minutes, stirring continuously. Whisk in the cream, mustard, salt, pepper and nutmeg.

3 Preheat the oven. Mix the sauce, egg yolks, cheddar, bacon and mushrooms through the pasta and spoon into an ovenproof dish. Sprinkle the crisps and Parmesan over and bake for about 20 minutes until the cheese has browned and melted. All you need now is bread, butter, good company and a glass of wine.

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April 2023

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