Pea flowers

It’s a little bit early to hope for fresh homegrown peas, but I made this last night and it went down a storm, so it’s worth using up the last of your frozen harvest (or shop-bought frozen peas) for this. And if you’ve been sprouting pea shoots this winter, they make a lovely garnish.

Cheesy Peasy Pasta Bake
Serves 2 hungry people

125 g macaroni or suitable pasta alternative
Olive oil
200 g peas
125 g buffalo mozzarella (doesn’t have to be buffalo, but does need to be the fresh sort)
2 tbsp pesto
25 g strong cheese, grated (e.g. parmesan, pecorino or cheddar. I used manchego.)
Peashoots to garnish (optional)

  1. Cook the pasta until it’s nearly tender (if in doubt, follow the instructions on the packet). Throw in the peas for the last couple of minutes, so that they heat through. Then drain.
  2. While the pasta is cooking, dice up the mozzarella and combine the pesto with 1 tbsp olive oil.
  3. Preheat the oven (I tend to use 180°C in our fan oven; if you don’t have a fan oven it needs to be a bit higher; Gas Mark 6).
  4. Once the pasta is cooked and drained, combine all of the ingredients in the saucepan and stir well. Pour the mixture into an ovenproof dish.
  5. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the top, then bake for 20-25 minutes until the top is bubbling and starting to go crisp.
  6. Serve garnished with fresh pea shoots for a taste of spring 🙂