Cauliflower Pasta Casserole, Crispy Smoked Bacon & Hazelnuts

A real comfort food recipe with a healthier béchamel sauce: this casserole! I love casseroles since it is easy to make and you can make these ahead. So whenever you have a busy day, this is a great recipe to make the day before.

Pasta Casserole with Cauliflower, Bacon & Hazelnuts

Servings 2 servings
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 45 mins

Equipment

  • Oven
  • Cooking Pot
  • Blender // Food Processor
  • Frying Pan

Ingredients

  • 150 gram Pasta

Healthier Béchamel Sauce

  • 400 gram Cauliflower
  • 200 ml Milk
  • 1 Shallot
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 50 gram Butter

Casserole Ingredients

  • 100 gram Smoked Bacon
  • 150 gram Cauliflower
  • 4 tbsp Chopped Hazelnuts
  • Black Pepper
  • Some Aged Sheep Cheese like parmesan or a local variety
  • Parsley

Instructions

Healthier Bechamel Sauce

  • Melt the butter in the cooking pot on a medium heat. Chop the shallot and the clove of garlic and add those to the cooking pot. Bake this until glossy, whereafter you can add the cauliflower rose and milk. Cook this until the cauliflower is soft.
  • Blend the cauliflower mixture until you have a creamy smooth sauce.

Preparations for the Casserole

  • Cut the smoked bacon into lardons and tear the big cauliflower roses into small roses.
  • Bake the lardons on a low heat in the frying pan until crispy.

Precooking the pasta

  • Bring some water to a boil, add a tablespoon of salt and cook the pasta for 5 minutes.
  • Drain the pasta and let it cool down to room temperature. To make sure the pasta will not stick together, you can add a bit of olive oil.

The Casserole

  • Preheat the oven on 180 degrees Celsius or 356 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Mix the pasta, béchamel sauce, crispy bacon (including the baking fat), black pepper and cauliflower roses. Add the mixture to an oven dish and bake for about 20 minutes.
  • In the meanwhile you can already grate some cheese, and chop the hazelnuts.
  • Take the oven dish out of the oven, and top the casserole with the cheese and hazelnuts. Bake the casserole for another 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Serve with some fresh parsley!
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Dutch, Italian

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