If there was ever any doubt that I truly love my husband - my undying devotion has been proven.
Using a basic (but wonderful) Cooks Illustrated recipe, I have brought together 3 of Mr. Vittles' favorite things into one glorious dish:
- mac & cheese
In fact, I could barely make out the "really good" part as he was stuffing his face with mouthfuls of this creamy macaroni!
Ok, listen. I don't see such reactions often, so allow me just a moment to revel in this achievement.
To prove its few & far between, the last time I received this level of praise was about a year ago. I entered a contest for Food Network Magazine's secret ingredient (which, for that particular issue, was coconut) and created an original recipe for a Coconut Kona Ice Cream.
Which was A-MA-ZING, if I do say so myself.
More on that soon - don't worry, I'm more than free to share that recipe with you since I got robbed in the contest by some chick with a coconut scone recipe.
Scones? Like, seriously... who even eats scones?
(I dunno, maybe you eat scones. Sometimes I do too. The real issue is actually that I was a big ol' loser in said contest, and am clearly still bitter).
Anyhoo - my point is, Mr. V was loving every second of the coconut-coffee ice cream combo. Much like when he took a bite of my Pepperjack Bacon Mac & Cheese.
And if you're a wifey like me, you can go make your husband even happier that he married you :)
Pepperjack Bacon Mac & Cheese
- 1 lb. elbow macaroni
- 1 T. salt
- 3 T. butter
- 3 T. flour
- 3/4 t. ground mustard
- 1/8 t. cayenne pepper
- 1/4 t. garlic powder
- 2 1/2 C. milk
- 8 oz. pepperjack cheese, grated
- 8 strips of (cooked) bacon, crumbled or chopped in small pieces
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1 C. panko bread crumbs
In now empty pot, melt butter over medium heat until foaming.
Add flour, mustard, cayenne & garlic powder and whisk well to combine. Continue whisking about 1 minute, until fragrant.
Gradually whisk in milk about a cup at a time, then bring mixture to a boil while whisking constantly. (This is important - mixture must reach a boil to thicken fully).
Then reduce heat to medium & simmer, whisking occasionally, until consistency becomes that of heavy cream (about 5 minutes).
Remove from heat and whisk in cheese, salt & bacon. Add drained pasta and return whole pot to burner over medium low, stirring mixture until steaming & heated through (5-6 minutes).
Transfer mixture to a broiler-safe, greased 9x13" pan and sprinkle panko on top. Place in broiler on middle/lower rack and broil 3-5 minutes until crumbs are browned.
Allow to cool 5 minutes before serving.
Recipe Adapted from Cook's Illustrated's "Classic Macaroni & Cheese"