In the first of our What’s Cooking? Series, we collaborate with a famous TV chef and food stylist for a mouthwatering mac and cheese (with bacon of course!) recipe. The Afternoon Express foodie guides us through a smokey, creamy and cheesy favourite, which is the ultimate comfort food. This affordable, tasty dish is perfect for mid-week dinners or family gatherings, so get cooking! Here’s how to make The Ultimate Mac and Cheese Recipe by Clement Pedro.
2 packets of Woody’s Premium Cut Shoulder or Back Bacon, roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
100g mature cheddar, grated
80g – 100g blue cheese, crumbled
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
500g cooked pasta of your choice (macaroni, penne, or rigatoni)
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
40g roughly chopped parsley
Preheat oven to 180C. Heat 10g of butter over medium heat along with the bacon, cooking to a golden crisp.
Remove the bacon, add the remaining butter to the same pot or pan. Add the onions to cook and caramelise slowly.
Once the onions are golden in colour, add the flour and begin mixing to cook out the flouriness, this should take about 2 minutes.
Slowly begin adding the milk, pouring in about 1 cup at a time and mixing until the mixture starts to thicken before adding the next cup.
Once all the milk has been added, start incorporating the cheese, again adding it gradually to prevent it from clumping up and causing a lumpy sauce.
Continue mixing in the cheese until smooth sauce forms, add the nutmeg and taste if extra seasoning is needed. Add 3/4 of the bacon to the sauce and mix through along with the cooked pasta. Add the mixture to a large dish or individual dishes before placing in the oven to cook for about 25-30 minutes or until golden and brown on top.
To prepare the bacon and breadcrumb topping: heat the butter in a pan over medium heat before adding the garlic and cooking for a minute or until golden and almost crisp. Add the breadcrumbs and cook until toasted before adding the bacon and tossing through with the parsley.
Enjoy The Ultimate Mac and Cheese Recipe by Clement Pedro!