|Mac n Cheese with lotsa veg|
Mr T and I returned from our brief break from sunny and warm Surfers Paradise and was greeted by the wet and freezing cold of M Town.
I was really craving something homey and decide to make mac'n'cheese. It's also Mr T's number 1 comfort food. This is what he would request when he's sick. No Congee for him....
I remember we had this whole head of cauliflower sitting in the crisper section of our fridge that we got at the market nearly a month ago and this long forgotten leek. So thought we'd better use them up now that our oven has been fixed (it was out of commission for nearly 6 months! >.<)
Ingredients (feeds 4 or more)
- 1/2 packet of pasta (I used macaroni coz I like their shape)
- 1 whole head of cauliflower, separated into florets
- 1 leek, sliced finely up to all the edible bits
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped finely
- 1 carrot (grated)
- 1 red capsicum, diced
- frozen green peas (optional and use as much as you like)
- bacon, diced (optional, use as much as you like)
- white wine
- 1 egg
- 1 heaped tablespoon of whole grain mustard
- mixed herbs
- Slap ya'Mama (cajun/chili powder - optional)
- Dukkah (optional)
- cheese (cheddar, Parmesan, mozzarella)
- breadcrumbs (optional)
- Olive oil
- Salt & Pepper
- Season the cauliflower florets with mixed herbs, salt & pepper, slap ya'Mama and Dukkah in a roasting pan (or whatever you'll be making the mac'n'cheese in), place in oven and roast for 20 mins or so, until soften.
- Cook pasta on stove top per packet direction til 70% ready (under cook them, because they'l cook further in the oven).
- In a large saucepan, over medium heat, fry up the bacon bits over a splash of olive oil, add the leek, cook for 5 mins.
- Add garlic and grated carrots cook for another couple of minutes, add capsicum & frozen peas, keep stirring so they don't stick to pan and everything is thoroughly mixed, season slightly with salt and pepper.
- Pour out cooked pasta and drain.
- In pasta pot over medium heat, make a roux with the butter and flour until it's a nice nutty tan/brown colour.
- Add in milk and white wine, make sure it's NOT bubbling and crack in the egg, keep whisking so it doesn't form a poached egg!
- Season with whole grain mustard and Slap ya'Mama, keep whisking and add in cheese until it's one gooey gooey glob.
- Transfer cooked cauliflower to the saucepan of veggies along with the cooked pasta and mix well.
- Pour the mixture back into the roasting pan and then add in the cheese sauce, top with a sprinkle of breadcrumb to give it that crunchy top
- Bake for 20 mins until it's golden.
- DIG IN!!!