Today was one of the few instances when I cooked a dish based on my instincts rather than follow a recipe… which is not to say I didn’t google around before launching into the project – a short one may I add (under 30 minutes). Given how cold the day was, my tummy and soul were both in need of instant gratification- well something warm and hearty definitely. However, embarking on a laborious meal was not an option, so I settled for a pasta bake instead. I had a can of cream of chicken soup in my cupboard, and mushrooms; frozen veggies and lots of cheese in the fridge. I gathered the above and few other ingredients, cooked it all up and what happened next was this.
A closer look perhaps..
Now you may or may not want to try your hand at making this (though I strongly suggest you do), I would nonetheless proceed to post the recipe here. Primarily because if I don’t, I am bound to forget it for the next time!
- Pasta (the short variety): 150 gm
- Onion: One; medium
- Garlic: two cloves; smashed
- Mushrooms: a cup; sliced
- Frozen vegetables: a cup and a half (you can use fresh ones too). I used cauliflower, broccoli and carrots. You can use peas and green beans as well.
- Cream of chicken soup: a can (I used Heinz)
- Parsley: a bunch; chopped
- Cracked pepper: to taste
- French mustard: a tbsp- for me this was the star ingredient
- Tabasco: a dash
- Olive oil: 1 tbsp
- Hard cheese: a cup or as much or little as you like. I used Cheddar
- Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees C
- Cook pasta according to instructions on the pack
- Heat oil, saute onions and garlic till former is translucent
- Add mushrooms and fry till they are almost cooked
- Next, add thawed vegetables and saute them further. I kept mine a bit crunchy but ultimately it is up to you to decide how you like them.
- Add salt and pepper
- Follow this up by adding chopped parsley
- And then mustard. The fragrance at this stage is oomphy and very very nice
- Next up is the cream of chicken soup and that dash of Tobasco. The inspiration behind this addition was when I used the pungent sauce to spice up my usually bland chicken soup and fell in love with the combination
- Let it all bubble for five minutes or so. If the sauce feels clumpy at this stage, add 4-5 tbsp of milk or the bubbling hot pasta water.
- Once the pasta is done, drain the water out and add to the sauce. Add more pepper and toss it all together
- Transfer the above onto a backing dish; grate cheese
- Bung it all into a pre-heated oven for till when the cheese melts
Grab a fork and get ready to dig in!