Mac’n’cheese is such an understated dish. We all had it growing up, and I remember it as one of those dishes that was heavy, stodgy and boring. But I think that the mac’n’cheese movement has begun, and now it’s not uncommon to see reinvented versions of this comfort meal on various menus around town. I thought I’d give it a crack at home one weekend, and I was pleasantly surprised at just how delicious it was. It’s a cost efficient dish, it doesn’t take long, and naturally, I made extra that I could freeze for some meals later on in the week. You can add more vegetables than what I did if you want to make it more healthy, but I think the key is to make sure you dice them pretty small, so that it doesn’t take away from the macaroni itself.
- 6 rashers streaky bacon
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 capsicum, diced
- 1 packet of macaroni
- 3 T flour
- 50 g butter
- 6 T milk
- 1/2 c parmesan, grated
- 1 c cheese, grated (I used Edam, but you could use almost anything)
- 1 t paprika
- 1 t nutmeg
- 3 T breadcrumbs
- Cook the bacon in a pan. Remove the bacon and leave it to sit on a paper towel. In the same pan (using the bacon juices) cook the garlic, onion and capsicum until soft. Set aside.
- Cook the macaroni pasta in a separate pot.
- While the pasta is cooking, create a white sauce by melting the butter in a pan, adding the flour to form a paste and then slowly adding the milk into it forms a sauce. Gradually add the parmesan, and keep stirring so that it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
- In a casserole dish, spread the macaroni evenly across the dish. Add the onion, garlic and capsicum and then pour the white sauce across making sure that all of the macaroni is covered.
- Spread the grated cheese across the top, sprinkle with paprika, nutmeg and finally the breadcrumbs.
- Bake in oven for about 30 minutes (or until golden) at 180°C.