Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Mac and Cheese

Mac and Cheese
Who doesn't love Mac and Cheese.  It is a favorite  at my house.  I have a recipe I  make that everyone loves.  Recently, I took a step on the wild side and made a new Mac and Cheese recipe.  Why would I be so daring?  This recipe had bacon in it.  I love bacon.  Anything with bacon has to be good.  This recipe is similar to my standard recipe only for the bacon and the paprika.  It calls for one tablespoon.  I thought that's a lot of paprika - I wondered if it was a misprint.  I followed the recipe as instructed and it was delicious.   You start by cooking your bacon over medium heat until it is crisp.  You remove the bacon from the pan and add onion and bay leaves to the bacon drippings.  Cook for a few minutes and add the paprika and cayenne until they are fragrant.  You then add the flour and whisk in the milk.  You bring the sauce to a boil and cook until it has thickened.  While the sauce is cooking you cook the macaroni.  Once the sauce is done you gradually whisk in the cheese.  You add the bacon to the sauce and season with salt .   The sauce is added to the cooked macaroni and spread into a prepared baking dish.  Cheese is sprinkled on top and the mac and cheese. Bake for thirty minutes.   Take out of the oven and serve.  A delicious comfort food experience awaits you and your family.  

Grant's Mac and Cheese
From Food and Wine Magazine


1 tablespoon unsalted butter
6 thick slices of bacon (6 ounces), cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 medium onion, minced
2 bay leaves
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
6 cups whole milk
1 pound elbow macaroni
1 pound extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded ( 5 cups)


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter a 9-by-13-by-2-inch baking dish.  In a large saucepan, melt the butter.  Add the bacon and cook over moderate heat until crisp, about 7 minutes.  With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a plate.
2. Add the onion and bay leaves to the saucepan and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened, about 5 minutes.  Add the paprika and cayenne and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 3 minutes.  Stir in the flour until blended.  Gradually whisk in the milk until the sauce is smooth.  Bring to a boil over high heat, whisking constantly, and cook until thickened.   Reduce the heat to low and simmer the sauce gently for 30 minutes, whisking frequently.  Discard the bay leaves.

Sauce Cooking -see the bay leaves
3.  Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.Add the macaroni and boil until pliable but undercooked, about 4 minutes.  Drain the macaroni and return it to the pot.
4. Stir 4 cups of the cheddar cheese into the hot sauce, add the bacon and season with salt.  Add the sauce to the macaroni and mix well.  Spread the mac and cheese in the prepared baking dish and scatter the remaining 1 cup of cheddar on top.  Bake for about 30 minutes, until golden brown and bubbling.  Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Finished Sauce
Ready for the oven
Makes 8 servings

Make Ahead:  The assembled mac and cheese can be refrigerated overnight.  Bring to room temperature before baking.


  1. I definitely love mac and cheese! Yum!

  2. Geraldine, mac and cheese is always such a perfect comfort-style food to prepare for the family and your version with the added bacon sounds so very tasty!