Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Mac 'n' Cheese

New York life seems to consist of eating out every night which is causing me some serious problems in the cooking department. So far I think I have only cooked once so I thought that since now I'm living the  American dream I would make the classic Mac 'n' Cheese with a bit of an English twist.

20g butter
1½ tbsp flour
1 garlic clove, sliced
500ml milk

300g Macaroni
handful of cherry tomatoes whole or chopped
1 onion diced
1 big leek sliced very finely
7 slices of bacon
75g chedder or red leciester
80g parmesan
a few sprigs of thyme

Get a pan of salted water on the boil and preheat the oven to around 220˚c.
Melt the butter in a large pan and add the flour and sliced garlic, keep stiring all the time and you should have a paste, when the garlic has a little colour start whisking in the milk a little at a time so you make a smooth sauce. When all the milk is in let it gently bubble for a bit whilst still stirring and then leave on a very low heat while you get everything else ready.

Fry the bacon or lardons until crispy and then dab off some of the oil on kitchen roll and set aside.
Fry the onion and leek wiht a knob of butter in the bacon pan until soft and golden and then add them and the bacon bits to the sauce along with some thyme leaves and tomatoes.

Boil the macaroni and when its ready drain and add straight to the sauce along with both cheeses saving a bit to sprinkle on the top and take off the heat. Season genourously and its also nice with a grating of nutmeg or worcester sauce. At this point if you feel adventurous you can add any other veg that you want like spinach, par boiled broccoli etc. Pour out the mix into a oven proof serving dish and sprinkle over the remainder of cheese and bake in the oven for about 30 mins until golden and bubbling. I like it served with a big green salad.

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