The photo may not look perfect, but trust me, your taste buds will LOVE this one!
This is an adaptation of mum’s recipe and reminds me of winters growing up. It’s the ultimate comfort food and has been a winner with little grub from when he was about 10 months old (remember, we did grain-free for the first wee while, otherwise I probably would have given it to him a little earlier!).
This recipe has a little twist in it with the bacon and the peas are in there to make us feel good about this deliciously creamy dish. If yours don’t like peas, you could stir through some baby spinach at the end or grate in some courgette; it wouldn’t change the flavour much at all. For a plain and simple version, you can leave out the peas and bacon, it’ll still be a hearty meal. The Dijon mustard is a must; my husband doesn’t like it but can’t even tell it’s in here! Somehow, this just doesn’t taste the same without it.
This can be served straight away or you can freeze it; both before or after you’ve baked it, it’s up to you. I’ve also put this in little ramekins and frozen them so that I have some meals ready and waiting on those nights we decide to have cheese on toast for dinner. You could make this vegetarian by leaving out the bacon, it’s not a ‘must.’
This is also a great one for those mama’s-to-be who might be prepping some meals for those first few days at home. You’ll need all the carbs and cheese you can get! Did you know that cheese is referred to as “dairy crack”? Read about that here. No wonder I can’t get enough…. And I don’t think you’ll ever have enough of this either!
Tip: once the pasta is cooked and you’re waiting to add it in, glug some olive oil over it and stir it through. This’ll stop it from sticking too much while it’s cooling down.
- 200gm macaroni elbows
- 125gm bacon
- ½ cup of frozen peas
- 2tbsp butter
- 2tbsp flour
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 cups of full fat milk
- 2 cups of grated cheese
- Firstly, cook the peas and pasta in separate pots of boiling water until soft, set aside.
- Fry the bacon in a pan until crispy or cooked to your liking, set aside and break into bite-sized pieces when cool.
- Rinse out the frying pan, then melt the butter and sauté the onion until opaque and soft.
- Add the mustard and then the flour, continuing to stir
- Whilst stirring, add the milk until there are no lumps. Simmer over low heat, continuing to stir, until the sauce thickens.
- Add ½ the cheese and then the cooked peas, bacon pieces and macaroni pasta
- Place in a greased oven-proof dish and cover with the remaining cheese
- Bake at 190c for 20minutes or until bubbling and golden