March 31, 2011

Smokey Cheddar and Bacon Macaroni and Cheese

So there I was, minding my own business in the supermarket when I stumbled upon smoked cheddar.  Self I said, what could we do with this here treasure? Macaroni and Cheese would be delish with a smoky twist don't you think? Yes, I do think. 

Isn't it facinating to get a glimpse of the conversations I have in my head?  Doesn't it make you want to run the next time you see me? :)

I just put this together using the standard proceedures for mac and cheese, but you could heat this up a bit by adding some jalepino's if you wanted.  I'm not a huge heat fan, so I'll just stick with the way I made it.

I didn't take a lot of pictures, I apologize.  I bet you can figure it out though.  I have faith in you.

This is very flavorful, nice and smoky.  The texture is wonderful especially when you get a bit of the crispy bacon sprinkled on top. I hope you like it.

What you'll need.

Bacon - half a package - cut into pieces.
1 lb uncooked elbow noodles
1 quart milk
6 Tbsp butter
1/2 C. flour
4 C. grated smoked cheddar
4 C. grated sharp cheddar
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cook the cut up bacon in a skillet until crispy.  Let the oil drain off by putting the cooked bacon onto a plate with a papertowl.  Let sit until needed in a few minutes.

Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt and stir in the uncooked noodles.  Cook until al-dente (about 6-8 minutes).  Drain.

While the pasta is cooking; melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat.  When melted add the flour and cook for about a minute or so.  Use a whisk so there are no clumps.  Slowely add the milk while whisking to ensure no lumps.  Bring back up to a bubble and stir constantly until thickened.  Add the grated cheese and stir until smooth.  Mix in the nutmeg and pepper and a little more salt if needed.

When the noodles are done and drained, stir them into the cheese mixture. Stir in about half of the crispy bacon.  Pour this mixture into a 9x13 dish and bake for 30 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling and beginning to brown.  Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes before serving.  When serving, add more crispy bacon on top.

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