One of the foods that took me years to love are peas. For years and years, I’d pick them out of the arroz con pollo my mom would serve us. I’d pick them out of salads, pastas and appetizers. I’d eat everything except a small pile of green peas. But now, I can’t get enough of them. Fresh peas are obviously the best. There’s nothing that can compete with that. But I usually love to add peas to all sorts of things because I always have a bag in my freezer.
This creamy and delicious pasta is perfect for spring. It’s loaded with delicious peas and artichokes. Of course, you can swap out the cheeses for any cheese you have on hand (that’s melty and tasty). I like to add cheddar and gouda (it’s my favorite combo) but other good contenders would be mozzarella, fontina or pepper jack.
Peas and Artichoke Baked Pasta
- Buttery Bread Crumbs:
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup Italian bread crumbs
- Kosher salt
- Macaroni and Cheese:
- 1/2 cup of unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 cups milk
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- Freshly ground pepper
- 1 cup grated Aged cheddar
- 1/2 cup grated gouda (about 5 ounces)
- 1 cup peas (thawed)
- 1 can of artichokes, drained and chopped
- 1 pound of pasta of choice (I used penne)
- To Make the Buttery Bread Crumbs: To a small saucepan, set over medium heat, melt the butter. When melted, add the breadcrumbs and a pinch of salt. Mix until the bread crumbs are thoroughly coated. Set aside.
- To Make the Macaroni + Cheese: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- To a medium pot, set over medium heat, add the butter. When the butter has melted, add the flour and mix it together and cook the flour butter mixture for about 1 minute. Pour in the milk in two batches, stirring continuously in between additions. Cook until it thickens up, about 2 to 3 minutes. It’ll start to bubble up and thicken. Give it a good whisk and be sure to get in those corners of the pan to get any floury bits up and mixed in. It should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
- Turn off the heat and whisk in the kosher salt, crushed red pepper, Dijon mustard and a few rounds of pepper. Give it a taste and adjust the salt to taste. Add the grated cheeses and mix them in until they’re melted. Cover the pot with a lid and set aside.
- Meanwhile, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta according to the package’s instructions, about 9 minutes.
- Drain the pasta and then immediately add it to the pot with the cheesy sauce, peas and artichokes. Mix until thoroughly combined.
- Transfer to a 9 x 11-inch baking dish (or one that is comparable). Smooth it into an even layer and then top it with the reserved bread crumbs.
- Transfer it to the oven to bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, until the top is lightly golden brown.
Adrianna Adarme is a food blogger and author living in Los Angeles, California. She writes the blog A Cozy Kitchen, where she shares comforting, everyday recipes from her kitchen. She recently authored her first cookbook, PANCAKES: 72 Sweet and Savory Recipes for the Perfect Stack. She’s a lover of breakfast, pie (and sometimes even pie for breakfast), corgis and cute things. You can find her on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.