I was talking with my youngest daughter about comfort foods that she found while she was living in China. While we were talking about that it reminded me of a favorite comfort food. Macaroni and Cheese. Many times we find ourselves reaching for the blue box. I was wanting something like that, but maybe a little more homemade and more attention to the details.
I remembered a Macaroni and Cheese recipe that I found on the Reddit cast-iron forum. One of the features of this dish is that it is baked in a cast-iron pan to help the dish develop a crisp crust on the bottom and sides. This crisp crust contrasts nicely with the tender pasta and the creamy sauce.
- 1 lb macaroni, cooked and drained
- 1/2 stick of butter
- 4 Tablespoons flour
- 3 cups milk
- 1/3 cup pre-cooked bacon bits
- 1 Tablespoon onion powder
- 1 cup parmesan cheese
- 8 to 10 ounces medium cheddar cheese, grated
- dried breadcrumbs
While cooking the macaroni, make the cheese sauce. In a medium saucepan melt the butter and add the butter to form a roux. Cook over a medium heat until the flour begins to turn to a golden brown. Slowly whisk in the milk and cook over a medium heat. Add the onion powder and cook until the mixture begins to thicken. Add the bacon bits, 1/2 of the parmesan cheese and the grated cheddar cheese and mix until melted and combined. Grease a cast-iron skillet and pour the drained pasta into the pan. Mix the cheese sauce into the pasta and top with a mixture of breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese. Bake in a 400° F oven for 30 minutes or until the top and edges have started to crisp. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes before serving.