Our aim at Boost is to always eat 'well'! That may sometimes be healthy and wholesome, but it may also sometimes be a bit naughty and comforting! That is the joy of eating! If you can strike a good balance between naughty and healthy in your life, I'm pretty sure you'll be a lot better off, both physically and mentally!
Since I was a child, home made macaroni cheese has always been a favourite of mine, and browsing Nigella's new book 'Simply Nigella' I came across this delicious twist on the old classic. We had this on Sunday night, when we didn't feel like a big roast, and before my husband had even had more than a few mouthfuls he asked if there was any more for seconds! It's really yum!
I may even make another batch to go as a side dish with the Easter meal this weekend! I followed Nigella's recipe, but added some kale into the mix just before putting the whole lot in the oven. It's great served with a peppery rocket salad.
500g Sweet Potatoes
300g small short pasta (I used Macaroni!)
60g soft unsalted butter
3 x15ml tablespoons of plain flour
500ml full-fat milk
1 teaspoon English mustard
1/4 tsp Paprika, plus 1/4 tsp to sprinkle on top
75g Feta Cheese
125g mature cheddar, grated, plus some to sprinkle on top.
4 fresh sage leaves (I left these out as I didn't have any- sorry Nigella!)
Salt and Pepper to taste
Pre heat the over to 200 degrees (c) or gas mark 6. Put on a large pan of water to boil.
Peel the sweet potato and cut into small pieces (2-3cm), and cook in boiling water (with salt) until they are soft. Spoon out the potato but keep the boiling water, and place into a baking dish, smashing up with a fork but leaving it a little chunky.
In another saucepan, gently melt the butter and add the flour, whisking to form a roux. Take the heat off the pan and slowly whisk in the milk until combined and smooth, and return to the heat until bubbling. Add the mustard and paprika and season to taste. I added the cheddar at this point too, however Nigella says to add the cheddar to the dish and combine with the white sauce as you mix it all together. This was not how I was used to making a cheese sauce, so I stuck to my guns, sorry (again) Nigella! It came out really well anyway! Season well with salt and pepper.
Cook the pasta in the boiling sweet potato water, and remove just before it's done, so it retains a little bit of bite prior to baking in the oven. Add the cooked pasta to the dish with the smashed up sweet potato (this is where I added the raw kale) and mix all together, adding the cheese sauce, and sprinkling the top with the cumbled Feta and left over cheddar. Add a small sprinkling of Paprika, (and shredded sage leaves if you have them) and cook in the oven for 30 minutes.
Enjoy with a peppery rocket salad, and a small measure of delicious red wine! The perfect Sunday evening meal! YUM!