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Root vegetable bake

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Ingredients

500 g g butternut squash butternut squash
3 beetroot beetroot
50 g g butter butter
1 onions onion
(finely sliced)
100 g g smoked bacon lardon smoked bacon lardon
80 g g flour flour
2 garlic garlic
(crushed)
1 l l semi-skimmed milk semi-skimmed milk
2 sprigs sprig rosemary rosemary
(very finely chopped)
50 g g cheddar cheddar
(grated)
500 g g conchiglie pasta conchiglie pasta
60 g g feta feta
30 g g breadcrumbs breadcrumbs
olive oil olive oil
salt salt
black pepper black pepper

Butternut squash and beetroot pasta bake

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1:20 h
(200)

Method

Butternut squash adds extra creaminess to this vibrant pasta bake, along with a perfect balance of earthy beetroot, fragrant rosemary and tangy feta.This bake tastes best eaten fresh after baking, but you can prep it up to 12 hours in advance and chill until ready to cook.

  1. Preheat the oven to 220ºC/200ºC fan/gas mark 7.
  2. Peel and dice the beetroot and squash and tip into a roasting tray. Drizzle in oil and season well, baking for 30 minutes until tender and crisp.
  3. For the cheese sauce, gently melt the butter in medium pan and add the bacon and onion. Fry for 5 minutes, then tip a third of the bacon and onion into a dish and reserve for later. Continue cooking the remaining bacon and onion, then add the garlic and flour and cook for 2 minutes.
  4. Gradually add the milk, stirring continuously with a wooden spoon until it begins to come together and thicken into a sauce. Once all the milk has been added stir in the rosemary, cheddar and seasoning to taste, simmering gently for 5 minutes until the cheese has melted.
  5. Meanwhile, cook the pasta for 8 minutes in a pan of boiling salted water - it should be nearly cooked but with a lot of bite. Drain and tip into a large mixing bowl.
  6. Add the sauce and most of the roasted vegetables, mixing well to combine. Pour into a large ovenproof dish and top with the remaining vegetables, onion and bacon. Scatter over the feta and breadcrumbs, then bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and bubbling.

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