Chorizo & jalapeño macaroni cheese

It’s officially comfort food season, and it doesn’t get much more comforting than a bubbling hot bowl of macaroni cheese, does it? Probs not.

I do, however, find that a classic mac & cheese can be a bit one dimensional and get sickly, so I love making this version instead – it’s studded with salty, smoky nuggets of chorizo and spicy, tangy, pickled jalapeños to help to cut through the cheese, plus there’s a breadcrumb topping for a bit of extra texture.

N.B. I’m well aware that everyone has their own feelings on how wet they like their macaroni cheese – some prefer a very oozy, liquid sauce while some prefer a slightly stiffer filling. This one is closer to the latter, (but definitely not dry!) So if you prefer it super oozy, just add a little more milk to your béchamel.

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Chorizo, tomato & caramelised shallot pasta

Those who know me will know how important pasta is in my life. (Extremely). I eat it at least once a week, usually more, and have a few favourite pasta dishes in my repertoire that I’d like to share with the world. This is one of them.

The beauty of this dish is that the pasta gets coated in a sweet, silky sauce made from caramelised shallots, garlic and cherry tomatoes, but then that sweetness is nicely punctuated by salty, smoky discs of soft chorizo, while a splash of sherry vinegar serves to balance everything out with a bit of acidity. Delicious.

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‘Nduja, mascarpone & lemon tagliatelle

This recipe is modelled on one of my all-time favourite pasta dishes at one of my all-time favourite restaurants, Padella ❤️

Alongside Padella’s ever brilliant pici cacio e pepe (my number one must-order dish there, as I’m sure it is for many), I also adore their ‘nduja, mascarpone & lemon fettucine – it’s spicy, garlicky, creamy, lemony and extremely satisfying. Ever since I first tried it, I’ve been making my own version of it at home.

I’m not claiming to have cracked Padella’s recipe, my version is different – I like to add cherry tomatoes for a bit of extra flavour, moisture and additional texture and obviously I don’t make my pasta from scratch because I’m far too lazy.

For anyone who doesn’t already know, n’duja is a soft spicy sausage (which comes in a kind of soft paste) from Calabria in Italy and its goddamn delicious – adds A LOT of flavour without being overly ‘meaty’. It can be a bit of a pain to get hold of but Waitrose sells it (in a jar), as do specialist online ingredient sites like Sous Chef or try your local deli.

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