Thursday, 17 November 2011

Creamy ham pasta

Sometimes you just want something comforting to nosh on, and today is one of those days for me.  Pasta it is!

This is creamy and cheesy and moreish, perfect for a cold and foggy autumn evening, the like of which is murking outside my door.

Winner with the snarflings, cheap and easy.  If you don't have an obliging local butcher who sells reasonably-priced ham offcuts - and if that's the case, move to the Valleys, I'll introduce you to mine - you can use bacon, or roast a small bacon or ham joint and hack it up into bitty bits.

Creamy ham pasta - serves 4, or 2 adults and 2 snarflings with worky leftovers

500g pack of pasta
some butter or spread suitable for cooking
some plain flour
some milk
about 150g strong cheddar, grated
some black pepper
4-5 spring onions, finely chopped
small tin of sweetcorn, drained
approx 300g ham offcuts,  chopped or torn into small pieces

Put the pasta on to boil.

Use the butter, flour and milk to make a bechamel sauce.  PLEASE don't make me give you quantities.  I don't weigh things, I do it all by eye, so trying to tell you how much to use is really awkward.  I would suggest doubling this basic recipe for this dish.  It will also tell you how to make the bechamel, or white, sauce, which will stand you in good stead to make 785615783664 other yummy things.

Classic bechemel sauce

When the sauce is made, stir in the cheese, pepper to taste, spring onion and sweetcorn.  Drain the pasta when it's cooked, return to the pan, add the ham and stir the sauce through until everything is cheesily coated.  You can add more grated cheese on top when you serve, if you're having a real inneedofcheese day.

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