Baked Mac N Cheese

Ingredients

Main Dish
1 lb.           Barilla Cellentani Pasta Noodles
½ Stick      Butter
3 tbsp        Flour
1 tbsp        Powdered Mustard
3 c.            Milk
1 tbsp        Dried Minced Onion
1                Bay Leaf
½ tsp         Garlic Powder
½ tsp         Paprika
1                Egg
1 c.           Crumbled Bacon (I cheat and use 1 bag of Oscar Mayer Bacon Bits)
1 tsp          Salt
Pepper to Taste
2 (8 oz.) bags      Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
1 (8 oz.) bag       Shredded Gouda Cheese (You can buy a package of sliced gouda a rip it up)

Topping
½ stick    Butter
1 ½ c.      Panko Bread Crumbs
This recipe can feed a crowd! I double the recipe for parties over 20 people as a side, and for crab feasts where people are hungry for the carbs!

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2.  Separate items into 4 bowls. I find this makes life easier and cooking faster!

First bowl- Flour & Powdered Mustard

Second bowl- Milk, Onion, Bay leaf, Salt, Pepper, Paprika, Garlic Powder

Third bowl- Egg (whisk by itself), Bacon

Fourth Bowl- ½ stick butter

3.  Bring a large pot of water to boil, add pinch of salt and cook pasta 6 minutes (noodles are still a little hard). Empty water out of the pot as soon as 6 minutes are over and set aside.

4.  In a large pan melt ½ stick butter. Whisk in the flour and mustard and keep it moving until it turns a nice “blonde” color.

5.  Stir in the Milk, Onion, Bay leaf, Paprika, Salt, and Pepper for about 5 minutes, then remove the bay leaf.

6.  Stir in the Egg, Bacon, 1 bag of Sharp cheddar, and the bag of Gouda. Slowly mix in the noodles with a rubber spatula to make sure its evenly mixed.

7.  Butter a baking dish then pour in the entire pasta mixture.

8.  Top the dish with 1 bag of Shredded Cheddar Cheese evenly spread out.

9.  Microwave ½ stick butter until melted and toss the Panko bread crumbs to coat. Top the dish with the buttered Panko bread crumbs.

10.  Bake uncovered for 30 minutes until Panko is golden brown.

The original recipe before my tweaks can be found here: Alton Brown’s Baked Macaroni and Cheese

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