If you are looking for a twist on a family favourite, then try this mac and cheese recipe from Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Richard Jones, which has a tasty sage and breadcrumb topping.
“I don’t know anyone who doesn’t adore this – it’s indulgent love on a plate,” write Sophie and Richard in their new book, Love. Food. Family.
If you’ve got a lot of mouths to feed at dinnertime, you can’t go wrong with this hearty mac and cheese.
Mac and cheese with crunchy sage breadcrumb topping
- 150g salted butter
- 5 garlic cloves, finely sliced
- 6tbsp plain flour
- 1½tbsp English mustard powder
- 1tsp smoked paprika
- 6 bay leaves
- 2L semi-skimmed milk
- 600g dried macaroni
- 300g cheddar cheese, grated
- 100g Parmesan cheese, grated
- 200g panko breadcrumbs
- 15 sage leaves
- 150g ball of mozzarella
- Olive oil, for drizzling
- Salt and black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 220C/200 Fan/425F/Gas Mark 7. Put the butter and garlic in a large saucepan and melt over a medium heat, then add the flour and stir until incorporated. Add the mustard powder, paprika and bay leaves, reduce the heat and cook, stirring continuously, for five minutes.
- Gradually pour in the milk, whisking as you go to avoid lumps. Bring the sauce to the boil, then leave it over a low heat to simmer, making sure you stir it often.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pan of salted water to a rapid boil over a high heat. Add the pasta and cook for six minutes.
- Remove the bay leaves from the sauce, then drain the pasta and add it to the sauce.
- Remove from the heat, give it a good stir and add two-thirds of the grated cheeses. Season well with salt and pepper to taste.
- Tip the mixture into a 30×20cm baking dish, scatter over the breadcrumbs and place the sage leaves on top. Scatter over the remaining grated cheese and tear the mozzarella on top. Drizzle with olive oil.
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden and crispy on top.
Love. Food. Family: Recipes From The Kitchen Disco by Sophie Ellis-Bextor and Richard Jones is published by Hamlyn, priced £20. Food photography by Issy Croker.