Bacon Mac and Cheese

Serves 6 to 8

INGREDIENTS

  • 12 oz Cracked Pepper Bacon strips, cooked, cut into bite size pieces
  • 3 slices white hearty sandwich bread, torn into pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces 5 Tablespoons butter for melting
  • 1 Lb elbow macaroni
  • Salt
  • 6 Teaspoons flour
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoons dry mustard
  • 1/4 Teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 5 Cups whole milk
  • 8 oz Monterey Jack cheese, shredded 8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, shredded

RECIPE

  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Cook Cracked Pepper Bacon, cut into pieces and set aside. Don’t eat it yet!
  3. Pulse bread and 2 tablespoons cold butter in food processor until consistency of bread crumbs.
  4. Salt and boil 4 quarts water in a Dutch oven or heavy bottom pot. We like to make the water salty, like the sea, to give the macaroni flavor, but salt to your preference
  5. Once water is boiling, add macaroni and cook until al-dente. Drain and set aside.
  6. Melt 5 tablespoons butter in the empty pot. Slowly whisk in the flour, mustard, cayenne and salt. Slowly whisk in the milk until the consistency is smooth. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and cook until it’s thick, like heavy cream, about 5 minutes.
  7. Remove pot from heat and whisk in all the cheese until it’s completely melted.
  8. Add macaroni, and (finally!) the bacon, stir and cook until the macaroni is hot again.
  9. Pour the entire mixture into a 13 x 9-inch broiler safe baking dish. Sprinkle the top with bread crumb mixture and broil until the bread crumbs are a lovely golden-brown (3-5 minutes...keep an eye on it so it doesn’t burn)
  10. Remove, let sit a few minutes and then enjoy!

 Make this recipe with Cracked Pepper Strips