Thursday, July 28, 2011

Bacon Cheddar Mac

This recipe for Bacon Cheddar Mac is another  super-fast dinner, totally inspired by what I had on hand:  a partial box of elbow noodles, a block of Sharp Cheddar with an expiration date fast approaching, and bacon. Everything's better with bacon. This made enough for one generous-sized portion or two merely normal portions (I ate the whole thing myself, so please don't count the calories for me..yummm...)

  • 3/4 cup uncooked elbow macaroni
  • 2 slices thick-cut bacon
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 3/4 cup skim milk
  • 3/4 cup shreeded sharp cheddar cheese
  • pinch smoked spanish paprika
  • pinch ground mustard
  • sea salt
  • fresh-cracked black pepper

  1. Boil macaroni according to package directions. Prepare the sauce while its going (the timing was spot-on for me)
  2. In a large non-stick skillet, fry the bacon until browned and crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan (save the grease! Emeril Lagasse would be proud! My family doctor would not!)
  3. Return the pan and hot bacon grease to a medium burner. With a silicone spatula, stir in the flour until it is lightly browned (goes pretty fast in hot bacon grease).
  4. Add milk and whisk quickly to distribute the flour. Cook over medium to med/low heat until the milk is thickened and bubbly (about 2-3 minutes, tops)
  5. Stir in the shredded cheese, a little at a time, waiting for it all to melt before adding more.
  6. Sprinkle in the paprika, mustard, and salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Drain the cooked macaroni (no need to rinse), and toss in the cheese sauce.
    Crumble in the cooked bacon and eat it quickly before guilt sets in.

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