Monday, April 29, 2013

Junior Masterchef Macaroni Cheese

Recipe By: Junior Masterchef
Serving Size: 6

225 g macaroni pasta, (1 1/4 cups)
4 rashers bacon, rind removed, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh bread crumbs
green salad, to serve
Cheese Sauce
40 g butter
1 onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons plain (all-purpose) flour
500 ml milk, (2 cups)
180 g cheddar cheese, (1 1/2 cups), grated
50 g parmesan, (2/3 cup), grated
mustard powder

1. Preheat oven to 200℃. Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water according to packet directions or until al dente. Drain in a colander and toss with a little olive oil and transfer to a bowl.

2. Heat a non-stick frypan over a medium heat and cook bacon, stirring occasionally until crisp. Add bacon and any pan drippings to the pasta and toss to combine.

3. To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan over a low heat, add onion and cook for 5 minutes or until softened. Add flour and stir continuously for 1 minute or until mixture is bubbling. Remove from heat and stir in milk a few tablespoons at a time (the flour mixture will absorb the milk and clump together). Continue adding milk, stirring after each addition until combined (after the third addition, it should start to become smooth). Stir in remaining milk, return to a low-medium heat and cook, stirring continuously, until the mixture comes to the boil and thickens.

4. Add ¾ cup cheddar, the parmesan and mustard powder to the sauce and stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the sauce over pasta mixture and stir to combine. Spoon mixture into a 1.5 litre (6 cup) ovenproof dish, smooth  top and scatter over breadcrumbs and remaining cheddar.

5. Bake for 40 minutes or until browned on top and bubbling. Stand for 5 minutes before serving with salad.

Mix & Match: Stir in 165g (1 cup) fresh corn kernels to macaroni mixture before cooking.

For a sweeter flavour and a little colour, substitute the brown onion for 4-6 finely sliced spring onions


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