Healthier Macaroni Cheese
My delicious, creamy-tasting macaroni cheese contains fewer calories than a traditional recipe and is very easy to make.
- 200 g dried macaroni
- 25 g butter, plus extra for greasing
- 50 g plain flour
- 600 ml semi-skimmed milk
- 75 g half-fat mature Cheddar cheese, finely grated
- 3 tomatoes, sliced
- flaked sea salt
- ground black pepper
- Half fill a large saucepan with water and bring to the boil. Add the macaroni, return to the boil and cook for 10-12 minutes, or according to the packet instructions, stirring occasionally until tender.
- Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. Put the butter, flour and milk in a non-stick saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer, whisking continuously with a silicone whisk. (Using a silicone covered whisk will prevent your pan becoming scatched.)
- Cook for 3 minutes or until the sauce is thickened and smooth, stirring continuously. Add roughly two-thirds of the cheese and season with salt and black pepper. Cook for 2-3 minutes more, while stirring, and add a little more seasoning if necessary. Preheat the grill to its hottest setting.
- Drain the pasta in a colander and return to the pan. Gently stir in the hot cheese sauce until thoroughly combined. Tip the macaroni cheese mixture into a warmed shallow flameproof dish (a lasagne dish is ideal) and spread to the corners.
- Arrange the sliced tomatoes on top. Sprinkle with the rest of the cheese and add a couple of twists of ground black pepper. Cook under the grill for 3-5 minutes or until the tomatoes are hot and the cheese is lightly browned.
Freeze the cooled and assembled macaroni cheese in individual microwave and freezer-proof containers for up to 2 months. Defrost in the fridge overnight. Reheat in the microwave on until piping hot throughout. To warm your dish, simply put in the sink and fill with very hot water from the tap or just-boiled water from the kettle. Leave for 3-5 minutes. Drain carefully and dry briefly before adding the pasta and sauce.