bacon mac ‘n cheese

March 1, 2011 Comments Off on bacon mac ‘n cheese

mac 'n cheese

The pictures may not be pretty, but this was so good I had to post the recipe tonight. Drew went back for not only seconds, but thirds!

A few notes: I used whole wheat macaroni (made me feel just a tiiiiny bit better about all the butter and cheese that’s in there) I also used whole foods bacon, which is thicker than most packaged bacon, I like it better that way and they’re also less salty so I can control the salt more.  I recommend using the best cheese you can get and are willing to pay for. The quality of the cheese really determines the goodness of the dish.

Based on Martha Stewart’s Perfect Macaroni and Cheese :

1/2 lb macaroni
1/2 pound bacon
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 3/4 cups milk
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons salt
pinch of nutmet, black pepper, and cayenne pepper
2 cups grated sharp white cheddar
1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano (plus another 1/4 cup for topping)
1/2 cup Gruyere (or can just use a whole up of the Parmigiano Reggiano)
1 cup panko bread crumbs 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F

1. heat up milk to a boil, then take off heat and let stand
melt butter in medium size saucepan on medium heat
add flour to butter and whisk to incoporate
slowly add 1/2 cup of the hot milk, whisk to get rid of any lumps of flour/butter mixture
keep whisking and add the rest of the milk slowly
Whisk until mixture turns thick, then remove from heat
add in salt, nutmeg, black pepper and cayenne pepper
mix in cheddar, gruyere, and 1/2 cup of the parmiggiano reggiano

2. boil pot of water, enough to cook 1/2 pound macaroni
cook macaroni until just before they’re totally done (it’s ok to overcook, I don’t think it matters so much in mac ‘n cheese)
drain pasta and rinse with cold water (you want to get all the gumminess off) 

3. while the macaroni was cooking, cook the bacon
easiest is to cut bacon into bit size pieces before cooking
after they’ve finished cooking, drain off as much fat as possible 

4. mix the panko bread crumbs with 1/4 cup of parmeggiano reggiano
mix the macaroni with the cheese/milk mixture
mix in 3/4 of the bacon
top with remaining bacon then panko/parmeggiano mix
bake in oven for 30 minutes until the panko turns golden (if you’re not seeing the color change after 30 minutes, just turn on the broiler for a minute or two, but keep an eye on it!)
remove from oven, let cool for 5 minutes. 




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