This is a great standby when you only have about 15 minutes to prepare your meal, then you can go off and do something else while it’s in the oven.
If it’s just you, you can either divide the recipe by 4 and cook just that, or cook the whole amount. Take it to the stage where you have added the macaroni to the sauce then divide into four small ovenproof containers. Use one and freeze the rest.
If you are cooking for several people, but still want to freeze some, you can double or triple the amounts (if you have a big pot to cook the macaroni). Take it to the same stage and then divide into 2 or 3 bigger serving dishes, freezing what you don’t need.
When you’re ready to cook another dish, take it out the freezer a few hours before to defrost. Sprinkle the cheese and breadcrumbs over and pop it straight into the oven to finish off. Bear in mind that it may take a bit longer to cook if it’s starting from cold.
2 cups uncooked macaroni
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk
Salt and pepper
2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
2 tablespoons breadcrumbs (bought or make your own from stale bread)
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil then add the macaroni. Cook until just tender, about 15-20 minutes. Drain well.
While the macaroni is cooking, melt the butter in a saucepan over gentle heat then add the flour and stir well. Gradually add milk, stirring all the time with a wooden spoon until it thickens and you have a smooth sauce. Add most of the cheese and stir until it is melted in. Now add the macaroni and taste before adding salt or pepper.
Pour into a greased pie dish and sprinkle with breadcrumbs and/or remaining cheese. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Serve with a green salad or cooked veggies.
Optional additions (add when you stir the macaroni into the sauce):
- Chopped ham
- A mix of chopped tomato and onion gently fried in some butter beforehand
- Fried mushrooms