Yes, you guessed it... it's Mac & Cheese time! It's just more evidence that I am really getting "Americanized". Is there a more American dish than that? I don't think so, and I am surprised that it took me so long to actually make it. And let me tell you... I don't think I've ever seen Justin so excited for a dinner as this time. I actually had to stop him from having a thirteenth serving of it, because I knew he would be in trouble later on. It did came out pretty delicious, in his defense. To make it even more interesting (yes, it is possible) I added some turkey bacon... you need to keep things exciting in the ... kitchen, right? Here is the recipe:
* 1 lb elbow macaroni pasta
* 12 slices turkey bacon, chopped
* 1/2 cup bread crumbs
* olive oil
* 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
* 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
* 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
* 2 cup fat-free milk
* 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
* 2 tbsp butter
* pinch of nutmeg
* salt and pepper
1. Heat a nonstick pan to a high temperature, add chopped turkey bacon and cook for 7-8 minutes until crisp. Transfer onto the plate and set aside.
2. In the same pan, melt 2 tbsp of butter, add flour and cook for 2-3 minutes to create a roux.
3. Add milk, mustard, salt, pepper, pinch of nutmeg and whisk everything together. Cook whisking constantly for about 5-6 minutes until sauce lightly thickens.
4. Add cheese and stir until it melts.
5. In a meantime, cook pasta in salted water until al dente. Drain and return into the hot pot.
6. Into the hot pasta add cheese sauce and crisp bacon, mix everything together, transfer into a baking dish, top with bread crumbs and gently sprinkle with olive oil (it helps to bro the bread crumbs). Bake at 350F for about 30 min.
7. I put half of the mixture into a baking dish and half into a large muffin pan, making individual lunches.
I don't think I even have to describe how it tastes! I'm sure you know that it's creamy, gooey, bacony with a nice crunch of the top! If you are not fan of a turkey bacon, you can skip it... or if you are a fan of a "real" bacon, you can definitely use the real deal. Great idea with the muffin pan, this way I could portion it into individual lunch boxes and not eat all of it at one sitting! Yep, it's that good.