A healthier twist on the standard mac & cheese dinner, this no-meat reboot features veg. It only takes 40 minutes to make this dinner that serves six, with enough leftovers for a mac frittata lunch for two the next day.
A quick tip when preparing the dinner though: don’t reboil the sauce after adding the cheese or it’ll go stringy.
25g plain flour
155g mature Cheddar cheese, grated
250g macaroni pasta
200g cauliflower and broccoli,
broken into small florets
50g kale (or spinach)
50g baby tomatoes, halved
1 courgette, grated
2 tsp olive oil
For the dinner
1 To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter in a pan, stir in the flour and cook for 1-2 min. Remove from the heat, then stir in the milk slowly to make a smooth sauce. Return to the heat and bring to the boil, stirring all the time. Simmer for 8-10 min and season with salt and white pepper. Stir in 75g cheese and allow to melt.
2 Heat the oven to 200°C. Boil the pasta according to the pack instructions, then drain and mix with the cheese sauce. Meanwhile, steam the cauliflower and broccoli for 3 min, then add the tomatoes and kale (or spinach) and cook for a further 2 min. Stir the vegetables into the pasta, then tip into a large ovenproof baking dish.
3 Toss the courgette with the olive oil, then place on top of the pasta with the remaining grated cheese. Bake for 15 min, until the topping is golden.
For the leftovers lunch
1 In a large mixing bowl, beat 2 eggs with 25g Parmesan cheese.
2 Add the leftover mac and veg pasta and stir until the mixture is well combined.
3 Heat a little vegetable oil in a frying pan and tip the pasta mixture in.
4 Press down with the back of a large spoon to flatten the base. Fry each side for 5 min. Serve with a mixed salad.