Thursday, February 7, 2013

Recipe- To Die For Mac Cheese

To Die For Bacon Mac n Cheese......yes please
To Die For Mac n Cheese
(my twist on an Alton Brown recipe)M

1 lb elbow or cavatappi macaroni
3 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp flour
3 cups skim milk
2 Tbsp dried minced shallots or onions
1/2 tsp paprika
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 large egg
12 oz grated cheese: I mix it up and used a combo of the following: parmesean, sharp white cheddar, sharp low fat yellow cheddar, gruyere, smoked gouda. I used an empty bag of 8 oz shredded cheese from the store to measure out approx 12 oz. 
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper- about 6 twists on the grinder.
3 slices thick applewood smoked bacon, cooked and crumbled.
3 Tbsp butter
1 cup Panko bread crumbs.....use the panko, not regular bread crumbs.

Preheat oven to 350
Prepare your macaroni as directed- I cook mine al dente so it's not mushy.
While pasta cooks, in separate pan, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and keep it moving fr approx. 5 min. I added some of the milk because my roux got thick and lumpy. It still didn't smooth out so I added the rest of the milk and threw it in the blender to smooth it out then returned to stove. Worked perfectly. Stir in the shallots, salt, peper, paprika, nutmeg and simmer another 10 min. 
Beat the egg in a small bowl and temper it by adding a spoonful of the hot roux. Do it a couple times then add the egg to the roux. Tempering raises the temp of the egg so it does not scramble when added to hot liquid. 
Stir in 3/4 of the cheese. 
Fold macaroni into the mix and pour into a greased 2 qt. casserole or 6 ramekins. Top with remaining cheese.
Melt the butter for the topping and pour it over the panko crumbs. Toss then spread over the top of the casserole. 
Bake for 30 minutes.
Remove from oven and let rest 5 min. Before serving.
This is the best Mac and cheese I have ever ate. I tried to reduce fat content but sometimes you just need to use some butter and regular cheese. 

Hope you enjoy it as much as we do! 

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