Thursday, July 14, 2011


It's Macaroni Day!!!

And, we all know what that means ............

Adult Sized Mac and Cheese 

  • Four (4) ounces (113 g.) thick-sliced Apple Wood Smoked Bacon
  • Olive Oil
  • Kosher Salt 
  • Two (2) cups Elbow Macaroni or Cavatappi 
  • 1 1/2 cups whole Milk 
  • Two (2) tablespoons unsalted Butter 
  • Two (2) tablespoons All-Purpose (AP) Flour 
  • 4 ounces (113 g.) Gruyère cheese, grated 
  • 3 ounces (85 g.) extra-sharp Cheddar, grated 
  • 2 ounces (57 g.) blue cheese, such as Roquefort or Saga, crumbled 
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground Black Pepper 
  • Pinch Nutmeg 
  • 2 slices white Sandwich Bread, crusts removed 
  • 2 tablespoons freshly chopped Basil Leaves 


Preheat the oven to 400°F (204°C).

Place a baking rack on a sheet pan and arrange the Bacon in 1 layer on the baking rack. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the Bacon is crisp. Remove the pan carefully from the oven - there will be hot grease in the pan! Transfer the Bacon to a plate lined with paper towels and crumble when it is cool enough to handle.
  • TECHNIQUE NOTE : You can use a plain 'ole skillet to cook the bacon if you prefer.
Drizzle  some Olive Oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the Macaroni and cook according to the directions on the package, about 6 to 8 minutes. Drain well. 

While the pasta is cooking, heat the Milk in a small saucepan, but don't boil it. Melt the Butter in a medium pot and add the Flour. Cook over low heat for two (2) minutes, stirring with a whisk. While whisking, add the hot Milk and cook for a minute or two more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, blue cheese, one (1) teaspoon Kosher Salt, Black Pepper, and Nutmeg. Add the cooked Macaroni and crumbled Bacon and stir well. Pour into a medium-sized gratin dish or oven-proof casserole.

Place the Bread Slices in a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse until you have coarse crumbs. Add the Basil and pulse to combine. Sprinkle the bread crumb mixture over the top of the pasta.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the Macaroni is browned on the top.

Recipe adapted from Ina Garten.

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