Helen’s Home Cooking

In this time of cold, flu and bugs this is a great meal to make in advance and is a lot lighter than it may sound, making it ideal for families whose appetites may need coaxing. Although this recipe is usually made with mince it can equally be made with vegetables or a mixture of both.



serves 4-6

  • 500g of mince


  • 250g mince, 2 carrots finely chopped, 1 pepper finely chopped


  • A mixture of vegetables chopped finely


  • 2 tbls of olive oil
  • 400-450g of pasta, I use macaroni but penne is equally good
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic crushed or 2tsp of garlic granules
  • 2 tomatoes chopped
  • 1 tbls of tomato purée
  • ½ tsp of cinnamon powder
  • ¼ tsp of freshly grated nutmeg
  • 150g of grated cheddar
  • 2 egg whites
  • salt and black pepper to taste


          Bechémal Sauce

  • 25g of butter
  • 2 tbls of cornflour
  • 750 mls of milk
  • 2 egg yolks
  • grated nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper
  1. In a medium sized pot heat the oil.
  2. Add the mince and brown.
  3. Add the onion and cook for 2-3mins
  4. Add the tomatoes, tomato purée, cinnamon, nutmeg, garlic, salt and pepper.
  5. Mix together thoroughly and set aside until cool.
  6. In a large pot cook the pasta in boiling salted water for ¾’s of the recommended time and drain.
  7. Return to the pot and stir in the egg whites and the cheese, add salt and pepper and set aside.

        Bechémal Sauce

  1. Into a large pot put the butter, cornflour and milk.
  2. Slowly being to the boil.
  3. Add the grated nutmeg and salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Remove from the heat and vigorously beat in the egg yolks.
  5. Set aside.
  6. In a large lightly oiled ashet cover the base with a layer of pasta.
  7. Add a layer of mince and spread over the pasta evenly.
  8. Add a further layer of pasta.
  9. Cover with the bechémal sauce and grate over some nutmeg.
  10. Cook in a pre-heated oven for 1 hour until golden brown at 180’c, 275’f or gas mark 4.
  11. Serve with salad and garlic bread.

I keep saying food does not need to be complicated to be super tasty, so let’s get simple. Next week shall be baked potato with an asparagus and chicken mayo filling and that’s it, ingredients right there.

Baked Tatties


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5 replies »

    • The small one in the picture is vegetarian made with finely chopped long broccoli spears, carrots and yellow pepper, was out of quorn.

  1. It’s also possible to use cooked lentils, instead of the mince. We did so, last Saturday, after a long walk in the snow. It was the perfect, warming tea to have!
    The ‘flat belly tip’ doesn’t stand a chance!

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