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Cauliflower & bacon pasta

Cauliflower & bacon pasta

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(18 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 35 mins

Easy

Serves 4

Cauliflower and macaroni cheese in one pasta bake? This family-friendly gratin is comforting and filling

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal673
  • fat34g
  • saturates16g
  • carbs56g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre3g
  • protein35g
  • salt2.8g
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Ingredients

  • 200g streaky bacon
  • 300g dried pasta
    Pasta

    Pasta

    pah-stah

    Pasta is the Italian name for Italy's version of a basic foodstuff which is made in many…

  • 1 cauliflower, cut into large florets
    Cauliflower

    Cauliflower

    coll-ee-fl-ow-ah

    A brassica, like cabbage and broccoli, cauliflower is a mass of tiny, tightly packed flower…

  • 25g butter
    Butter

    Butter

    butt-err

    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 25g plain flour
  • 300ml milk

    Milk

    mill-k

    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 140g cheddar, grated
    Cheddar

    Cheddar

    Ched-ah

    Once cheddar was 'Cheddar', a large, hard-pressed barrel of cheese made by a particular…

  • 1 soft wholemeal roll, whizzed to breadcrumbs
  • salad, to serve, (optional)

Method

  1. Heat the grill to high and bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Grill the bacon slices for 5 mins or until crispy, then drain on kitchen paper and cut into small pieces.

  2. Cook the pasta following pack instructions. Add the cauliflower to the pasta pan for the final 8 mins, so that it is just tender, then drain, reserving 2 tbsp of the cooking water.

  3. Melt the butter in a small pan over a low heat, then stir in the flour and cook for a couple of mins. Gradually stir in the milk, mixing well between each addition. Bring to a simmer, then cook for a few mins until thickened. Season, add the mustard and half the grated cheese. Stir until the cheese has melted and the sauce is smooth.

  4. Tip the pasta and cauliflower back into the pan along with the reserved cooking water. Stir through the cheese sauce and bacon, then transfer the mix to a baking dish. Mix together the breadcrumbs and remaining cheese, then sprinkle over the pasta. Cook for 5 mins under the grill until browned. Serve with a salad, if you like.

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Comments, questions and tips

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koolk_2009
30th Mar, 2017
3.8
Very tasty dish, everyone enjoyed it! I felt it needed more cheese than recipe said.
JW Inspiration
18th Feb, 2016
5.05
Made 1 and a half times the sauce. Upped the cheese. Extra slice or 2 of smokey bacon. Added a good whack of smoked paprika to the cheese/breadcrumb topping and grilled to finish. It's the dish the family asks for on a weekly basis. It more than your average mac n cheese....lots of flavour. If you're not a huge fan of cauliflower then you can half it or replace with broccoli. Can't recommend it enough...proper comfort food with a delicious tang.
MrsWiddowson
13th Jan, 2016
5.05
Very nice. Tasty and easy to make and went a really long way. Easily fed 4 adults with some left over for hubby's lunch the next day!
wrightyboy
27th Sep, 2015
Nice tasty dish, all the family enjoyed it. The streaky bacon gives it a good salty flavour. I added diced carrot at the same time as the cauliflower for some more veg and colour. My 9 year old has just had the left overs from yesterday and ate it all so that's a good sign! Would recommend it
x-x-x-faerie-x-x-x
1st Sep, 2015
5.05
This was delicious! Will definitely be making again, perhaps will try with some chicken or tuna. Very tasty indeed, hit with everyone including my two year old who had two bowls!
richml1979
16th Jun, 2015
Agree with others about the smoked paprika. I added mine to the blender when crumbling the bread. Made a tasty crispy topping.
mouse38
20th Apr, 2015
5.05
This replaced our old macaroni cheese recipe as the family favourite - the bacon goes really well and it's very easy to make.
smith0054
9th Feb, 2015
2.55
A really tasty meal. My comments mirror others in that I would probably make double the cheese sauce as there was definitely not enough despite adding more milk to the very thick sauce. With regards the cauliflower I would only use half as I felt the cauliflower overpowered the dish. As for the bacon, I used smoked back bacon which added a smokey element which was delicious but I would probably use double quantity. Next time I am going to try a bit of paprika as suggested. Overall, a lovely mid-week evening meal.
Baz070810
31st Mar, 2014
5.05
Sooo tasty! I took the advice from other reviewers and added quite a lot more milk (about 450mls), some raw brocolli, and 300g bacon. Oh, and good call on the smoky paprika! That made it. Really great. Will def make again.
littlemissspurfect
6th Dec, 2013
I made this last night. It was really delicious and full of flavour. I added chicken alongside the bacon and cauliflower. I ought to have reduced the amount of bacon in the dish as I'd added the chicken, but I'll know for next time. Also, I thought it needed to have a little bit more sauce. All a learning curve. Will def be making this again, but just reducing the amount of ingredients I use as I was only cooking this dish for two people.

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