Spring's in the air bringing the promise of seasonal vegetables, try this fresh approach to an old favourite, mixing up with leeks, fresh tomatoes and a selection of rich, creamy cheeses and summer salads.
• Salt and pepper
• 2 tbsp of olive oil
• 12 oz dried wholewheat macaroni or penne
• 2 tbsp butter
• 2 springs of rosemary (leaves stripped)
• 2 large leeks (cleaned and sliced)
• 1 oz of wholewheat bread
• 2 garlic cloves (peeled)
• 3 oz Gruyere cheese (coarsely grated)
• 3 oz Parmesan cheese (finely grated)
• 5 tbsp of sour cream
• 1/2 tsp of English mustard
• 2/3rd a cup of ripe cherry tomatoes (halved)
• 1/2 tsp of powdered nutmeg
Step 1: Preheat your oven to 400F. Fill a saucepan with water and bring to the boil, add a good pinch of salt, 1/2 tsp of olive oil and the dried pasta, cook to packet instructions then drain in a colander, reserving the starchy water.
Step 2: Place an oven proof pan on a medium heat, add the butter and rosemary leaves, fry for a minute or until crispy. Tip the leeks into the pan and cook till soft, 8-10 minutes.
Step 3: Meanwhile, tear the bread into chunks and add to a food processor with the remaining olive oil and garlic cloves, pulse until crumbed.
Step 4: When the leeks are done, turn the heat down, add the pasta and two ladlefuls of the cooking water, stir well, adding in the Gruyere and half of the Parmesan and Sour Cream, turn the heat up to medium and keep stirring in water as needed, taste and season with salt and pepper, stirring in the mustard and nutmeg.
Step 5: Place the tomato halves cut side up on the top layer of pasta, then scatter the breadcrumbs and remaining Parmesan, cook in the oven for 20 minutes, then plate up and serve with a fresh side salad.