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This recipe was part of the Food Fight: Macaroni and Cheese Challenge which ended Feb 29, 2008 04:00 PM.
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Mama's Cheddar Mac Bake Divine Recipe

Total Time: 1 hour | Active Time: | Makes: 6

I have cooked this dish for over 15 years now for my family and friends. My cheddar mac bake is pure comfort food and made with ingredients that can be found in many
kitchens in the United States.

Forget about the calories, don’t even attempt to make if you don’t want any guilt.. this is a guilty, very fattening dish made just for comfort.

Just like my grandmothers and their mothers, I have mainly measured ingredients with my eyes.. when deciding to share with Chow members, I made my cheddar mac bake and measured things out for the first time… Remember too, you can deviate and use a little more salt, pepper, flour or mustard.. It’s up to you, to get it to your level of DIVINE!

It is with much sincerity that I hope you will enjoy this dish.

Without further adieu, here is my Cheddar Mac Bake Divine

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 pound of elbow macaroni
  • 4 cups of shredded mild cheddar cheese or shredded mexican cheddar and monterray cheese blend
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of extra light virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of flour, I like wondra brand but any all purpose flour will do.
  • 1/2 teaspoon of yellow mustard
  • 1 cup of skim or 2% milk
  • 1/2- to 1 pound of crumbled maple flavored bacon
  • 1/8 teaspoon coarse black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon of sea salt or more to your taste
  • cooking spray
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Bring 4 quarts of salted water to a rolling boil in a large pot.
  2. Add pasta; stir. Return to a boil, stirring occasionally for 8-11 minutes or until pasta is tender.
  3. Drain and put pasta in a 13×9 bake dish which has been coated with cooking spray; let cool for 5- 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in a small non stick skillet add the oil; whisk in the flour over medium heat. Make sure to whisk out all lumps.
  5. Stir the flour mixture till it starts to bubble; very lightly brown. Don’t turn the mixture too dark brown, it must be light. Take off heat for a moment.
  6. Whisk in the mustard and blend thoroughly into the mixture. Put back on medium heat.
  7. Whisk in milk gradually, add 1/8 teaspoon of sea salt or more to your taste; 1/8 teaspoon of coarse black pepper. When the mixture starts to bubble take off burner and blend in a 1/2 cup of shredded cheese until melted. Set aside.
  8. After the macaroni has sat cooling for 5 or more minutes, add 2 cups of shredded cheese to the pasta. The cheese must be mixed in throughly.
  9. Combine the cheese sauce with the macaroni.
  10. Put foil on top of the 13×9 dish; put in a preheated 375 degree oven for 30 minutes or till the pasta’s edges are golden brown and the cheese is bubbly.
  11. Take out of oven; take foil off and top with remaining cheese; generously garnish top with crumbled bacon.
  12. Put foil back on and let sit for 10 minutes or till ready to serve.
  13. Goes great with a side of steamed, buttered, salted and peppered zuchinni or a side of fresh, steamed long green beans with minced garlic, topped with butter.

Member recipes are not tested by the CHOW food team.