An easy weeknight tea here that sneaks the veg in for the kids. If they’re not a fan of broccoli, switch it up with some peas, carrots or cauliflower, you can also swap bacon for sausages or chorizo.


Ingredients: Serves 4 – 6

100g parmesan cheese grated

50g Gruyère cheese, grated

10g olive oil

1 ½ tsp fine sea salt

150g bacon lardons

3 cloves garlic minced

400g dried penne pasta

300g broccoli florets, quartered


Cheese sauce

70g butter, diced

70g plain flour

700g whole milk

1 tsp English mustard

Salt and pepper



Preheat the oven to 160°C fan/ 180c/ gas mark 4

Look out a ceramic baking dish and have the grated parmesan and Gruyère cheese combined in a bowl by your hob for the next step.

Pan-fry the garlic and bacon lardons in the olive oil until crispy, set aside. In a separate pan, add the pasta to some hot water and boil for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile make a roux by adding the flour to melted butter in a pan on a medium heat, stir for 2 minutes to cook out the flour then add in the milk a little at a time using a whisk continuously to avoid any lumps. Make sure the mix doesn’t catch on the bottom. When incorporated, add half of the cheese mix and mustard and keep whisking for four minutes until smooth and creamy.

Drain the pasta and add to the baking dish, mix in the cheese sauce, bacon lardons and half of the grated cheese, then top with the remaining cheese and bake for 20 minutes until the top is crispy. Serve with garlic bread and salad.

Gary Townsend is head chef at One Devonshire Gardens by Hotel du Vin, Glasgow. See or phone 0141 378 0385 to book.

Twitter @Chefgtownsend

Instagram- @chef.g.townsend