Friday, July 29, 2011

Easy Stovetop Macaroni, Peas, Bacon, and Cheese a la Jamie Oliver

When it comes to mac and cheese, I have my tried and true favorite recipe and I rarely deviate from it. What's the point, really? But, in all honesty, said mac and cheese requires stove time, oven time, two different types of cheeses, and milk AND heavy cream. Don't get me wrong, it's the best mac and cheese on the planet, and completely worth the effort, but sometimes (read: always), I just want something I can make in one pot. When it's one of those nights for you, this is an excellent solution. It hits all the right notes--creamy, cheesy, decadent, a little meaty (that's the bacon talking), and best of all, quick and easy. Almost as easy, in fact, as that instant stuff in the blue boxes, minus the chemicals. Can't beat that. xo

Easy Stovetop Macaroni, Peas, Bacon, and Cheese a la Jamie Oliver
From In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite, by Melissa Clark
Kosher salt
8 ounces elbow or tiny shells pasta
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 strips bacon, cut into thin strips
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups frozen peas
3 tablespoons creme fraiche or heavy cream
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, or to taste (if using cream, use a little more)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional for garnishing

In a large pot of salted water, cook the pasta according to the package directions. Drain well. In a large skillet over medium heat, melt the butter with the oil. Add the bacon, if using, and the pepper and cook until the bacon is golden brown and crispy, 5 to 7 minutes.

Stir in the peas and cook for a minute to defrost. Add the creme fraiche and the basil and cook, stirring constantly, until bubbling, 2 to 3 minutes. Carefully add the pasta and drizzle with the lemon juice. Stir in the cheese until the pasta is completely coated and the mixture is creamy. Serve garnished with additional cheese, if desired.


  1. It looks and sounds delicious!

  2. I absolutely LOVE your blog, and I love Jamie Oliver! I know you did a recipe for roast chicken a while ago, you should check out Jamie's, it's pretty damn good.

  3. Thanks guys! NatatZest, I will definitely check out Jamie's roast chicken recipe. I love a good roast chicken and he never really disappoints.

  4. I made some modifications so that I could make this in my dorm (dried herbs instead of fresh basil, milk instead of creme fraiche) but it was still delicious!

    I wrote a bit about it on my blog, too.