Pimped-up Mac ‘N’ Cheese
A good-old family favourite now fit for the 21st century – Pimped-up Mac ‘N’ Cheese.
Mac ’n’ cheese’ is a classic American pasta dish – everyone in the family will love it. In a twist to this old school favourite, we’ve added some sweet cherry tomatoes and roasted red peppers, and then we’re giving it some crunch with a delicious oats, flax, and cheese crust.
With only 15 min hands-on-time, you can knock this up any day of the week.
Serve it with mixed salad and some crusty garlic bread.
Rich & Source of Nutritional Benefits
Usually, Mac 'N’ Cheese isn’t exactly healthy, white pasta with cheese, flour, butter and milk.
By swapping to more nutritional whole wheat macaroni, adding a couple of veggies and topping with fibre rich oats you are adding extra nutrition, vitamins and minerals to your families diet.
TIME: 15 min hands-on / 30 min bake
AGE: Toddler upwards
How to make it
TURN ON THE HEAT
Preheat the oven to;
190°C / 374°F (fan)
210°C / 410°F (conventional)
COOK THE MACARONI
Cook the macaroni (as per the pack instructions) in a large saucepan of boiling water.
This normally takes 8-10 minutes.
You want the paste al dente which means ‘a bit on the firm side'
Drain in a colander, rinse under cold water and set aside.
250 g macaroni
START THE SAUCE
Using the same pan, melt the butter with the garlic over a low heat, until the butter starts to brown.
Gradually whisk in the flour, milk, (a little at a time).
Add the stock and bay leaf.
Cook for 10 minutes over a medium heat, until you have thick smooth sauce.
Add in the parmesan and cheddar and whisk until the cheese is well combined and melted.
Turn off the hob.
15 g unsalted butter
1 garlic clove
550 ml semi-skimmed milk
2 tbsp flour
2 vegetable or chicken stock cubes
70 g parmesan
70 g cheddar
2 bay leaf
MAKE THE TOPPING
Whilst the sauce is cooking, mix together the topping ingredients from step 3.
50 g oats
30 g cheddar and/or parmesan
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp flax
ADD EVERYTHING TOGETHER
Add the macaroni, tomatoes and peppers to the sauce and mix well.
150 g tomatoes,
150 g jarred roasted red peppers
TOP AND BAKE
Transfer to a deep suitably-sized ovenproof dish.
Sprinkle over the oat crust (and extra grated cheddar or parmesan if you have some).
Bake for 20 minutes in the oven, until the oats and cheese are golden, bubbling, crispy and delicious.
Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before serving up.
Crabtree Farm tips
If you want your pasta and sauce to be full of flavour, it's best to add some of your pasta water to the sauce and cook them together. The water loosens the sauce and allows the sauce to stick to the pasta better.