• Pasta
  • 5/6 slices of cooked ham, torn into strips
  • 3 large field mushrooms
  • 125g tub of Seriously Strong Spreadable Cheese
  • 25g of butter
  • black pepper and salt

Ten days and counting until due date. Kitchen still with bare plaster walls, without tiles and unpainted windows. Yet a sense of calm is starting to pervade. I think my body is shutting my mind down in preparation for sleep deprivation and general chaos.

Charlie is increasingly coming round to the idea of a baby being in the house. He likes to pull my top up and stroke my tummy saying ‘hi baby’ which is very cute. He also threw a toy doll on the floor at playgroup this week with gusto. It bounced. Maybe he has mixed emotions about the big brother role.

On to the recipe. Everyone has a few quick fridge/store cupboard standby suppers. This one was conjured up recently when I needed to eat a bucketful of pasta asap. This is so quick and easy and satisfying (in my pregnant opinion) that I make no apology for it being trailer trash comfort food. Next I’ll be making my famous Smash toasties…

Ingredients:

  • pasta (as much as you like, any shape but I prefer something short and spirally to long and thin for holding cheese sauces)
  • 5/6 slices of cooked ham, torn into strips (Mine was rather thriftily sourced from the reduced section at Asda and was delicious, though was that lovely off the bone ham rather than reconstituted crap.)
  • 3 large field mushrooms sliced into 1cm thick lengths
  • 125g tub of Seriously Strong Spreadable Cheese
  • 25g of butter
  • black pepper and salt

Boil some water, salt it and cook the pasta. Whilst it’s cooking heat the butter in a frying pan until sizzling and almost spitting, then add the mushrooms and fry until browning slightly on both sides. I had to do mine in two batches as field mushrooms are rather large – plus I made enough pasta for about 5 people. The more mushrooms the more butter you need. They soak it up greedily.

As the mushrooms cook, set aside in a dish and add the torn ham. Once the pasta is cooked, drain it, but not too well. You want a bit of water retained in it. Return the semi drained pasta to the pan you cooked it in and then add the whole pack of spreadable cheese, stirring gently until all the pasta it coated evenly. Then add the mushrooms and ham, stir through and sprinkle with black pepper. Don’t add the mushrooms before the end or they contribute to a grey looking, unappetising mixture.

This must be eaten in front of the TV, without a tray, balancing the bowl just underneath your chin. It’s very nice with ginger beer or cream soda, to make the trailer trash scene complete.

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