You cook that's what.
When my friends had their babies last week I knew I had to cook up some hearty meals to bring over as an excuse to snuggle up their new, cute, perfect babies.
So one of the things I made this week for them (and let's face it for me too...) was the ULTIMATE Mac&Cheese.
This is not mac&cheese for everyday. This is mac&cheese for when you REALLY need some love.
<side rant... did you know Kraft takes all the nastiness out of their mac&cheese exported outside the US and just feeds us the crap? Well in any case - this is no Kraft(Crap) mac&cheese... this is dang good, gooey, cheesy, bacony, mac&cheese>
For this recipe (which is made to share) you need mass amounts - nothing is measured perfectly - so adjust as needed for your family.
The Ultimate Mac&Cheese We use organic, fair trade, and or local ingredients when possible.
2 pounds of pasta (we used fusilli – but choose your fav shape)
2 cups of homemade chicken stock
2 cups of milk
1.5 pounds of cheese (we like a cheddar, gruyere, jack, swiss mix – but again – choose what you like!)
4 tbs of flour
4 tbs of butter
½ tsp of nutmeg
½ tsp pepper
6 oz. of bacon (about 5 strips)
2 cups of breadcrumbs (we use the plainest organic we can find, the list has 4 pronounceable ingredients – CHECK YOURS most have 50+)
*I don't use salt because the following things you're addition will have salt: bacon, chicken stock & cheese :)
Fry bacon until crisp and drain. Set aside.
Melt butter in a pot on medium high heat. When melted, add flour and whisk together, let it cook for 2 minutes (but not burn). Add chicken stock and whisk together continuously until smooth (about 5-10 minutes). You may need to add a little water at this point if it is really thick. Add milk and keep whisking. Lower the heat. When everything in the pot is warm, start adding cheese and stirring. I don’t go crazy. I sliced all of the cheese and added a bit at a time, let it melt, and added more. While doing this – boil pasta until ALMOST done – when it is still a little crunchy, take out, drain, and pour into a couple of baking dishes. When your cheese is all melty and good, add nutmeg and pepper. Mix it all together and pour over your pasta. It should be a little soupy. Top pasta with breadcrumbs, chopped bacon, and more cheese (if you want). Bake until bubbly and brown on top. Enjoy.
This was the cheese I used - Swiss, Jack, Cheddar & Gruyere.
Flour and butter cooking through before stock is added.
Before the oven.
Vegetarians -leave out the bacon.
Vegans - do not attempt.
Hop on over to these blogs where - if they are lucky - I'll share this :)