The Broad Palate – Mar ’24


Macaroni Cheese with Leeks and Mushrooms (serves 4)

Seasonal leeks and mushrooms lighten up this mac ‘n’ cheese and make it a bit more nutritious.

  • 400g leeks, trimmed weight, washed and finely sliced
  • 250g punnet chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • 50g butter
  • 5 heaped tbsp plain flour
  • 800ml milk
  • 400g macaroni
  • 250g mature Cheddar, grated, plus extra for topping
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard, or to taste
  • 4 tbsp breadcrumbs (optional)
  • salt and pepper


Pre-heat oven to 180C/160C Fan.
Cook the macaroni as usual in salted water, until just al dente. Drain, stir in a trickle of olive oil to stop it clumping together, cover and set aside.
In a large, heavy-ish saucepan, fry the mushrooms in 10g of the butter until golden and dry. Remove and set aside.
In the same pan, melt the remaining butter over a medium heat. Add the leeks, cover and cook gently until soft (10-15 minutes should do it). Stir occasionally and add a tiny splash of water if sticking.
Sprinkle the flour over the cooked leeks and stir over a medium heat for one minute, then bit by bit add the milk, stirring all the time. Simmer for 2-3 minutes until thickened.
Stir in 200g of the cheese until melted and season with the mustard, salt and pepper.
Add the mushrooms and macaroni, mix well, check for seasoning and transfer to a baking dish.
Top with the remaining cheese and the breadcrumbs and bake in the oven for 45 minutes or until bubbling and golden.

Welsh Cakes (makes around 12)

 Welsh Cakes are for all year round – not just for 1st March – Happy St. David’s Day!

  • 125g salted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 250g self-raising flour
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 100g raisins
  • 0.5 teaspoon allspice
  • 0.5 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 1 large egg, beaten (+ a splash of milk if needed)


Rub or process butter into flour until like breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar, spices and raisins.
Add beaten egg and mix to a dough, adding a splash of milk if too stiff. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out to about 1 inch thickness then cut out rounds using a 2.5”/6cm biscuit cutter.
Heat frying pan to a medium heat and rub lightly with butter – you should need to do this only once.
Cook the Welsh cakes in batches for 3-4 minutes each side, until cooked through (keep an eye on the heat, you don’t want them browning too quickly).
Test for readiness by gently pressing the middle – also the sides will look dry when done.
When cooked, remove and immediately toss in some granulated sugar then place on a rack to cool.
They keep well in an airtight container for a week.

Many thanks to Ann Shaw 🙂

Bon Appetit!

The Bishops' Kitchen
To revisit the Bishops’ Kitchen recipes provided by Richard Childs – please click HERE 🙂