Macaroni and Cheese

A recipe taken from America: The Cookbook
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Macaroni and Cheese
Macaroni and Cheese

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Serves: 6-8

Ingredients

Salt
1 lb (455 g) penne pasta
4 cups (1 liter) milk
1 bay leaf
6 tablespoons (85 g) butter
6 tablespoons all-purpose (plain) flour
2 cups (230 g) shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese
2 cups (230 g) shredded mild cheddar cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons Tabasco-style hot sauce
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups (75 g) fresh breadcrumbs
2 teaspoons olive oil

Method

Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C/Gas Mark 5). Butter a 9 x 13-inch (23 x 33 cm) baking dish. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and season generously with salt. Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook for 8 minutes. Drain and set aside.

In a medium saucepan, heat the milk and the bay leaf over medium heat until very warm.

Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add the butter and let melt. Add the flour and cook, whisking constantly, until lightly golden, about 3 minutes. Discard the bay leaf and gradually whisk in the hot milk. Increase the heat to medium-high, bring to a low boil, and cook, whisking often, for about 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the cheeses, hot sauce, 1 teaspoon salt, and the pepper. Add the pasta to the pan and fold together to combine. Transfer the macaroni and cheese to the prepared baking dish.

In a small bowl, stir together the breadcrumbs and olive oil. Distribute evenly over the top of the pasta. Bake until the breadcrumbs are golden brown, 25–30 minutes. Serve hot.

BUY AMERICA: THE COOKBOOK

With 800 home-cooking recipes, America: The Cookbook is a celebration of the remarkable diversity of American food and food culture state by state. Features 50 essays and menus from a 'who's who' of 100 foremost food experts and chefs.

America: The Cookbook is the first book to document comprehensively – and celebrate – the remarkable diversity of American cuisine and food culture. A thoroughly researched compendium of 800 home-cooking recipes for delicious and authentic American dishes, America: The Cookbook explores the country's myriad traditions and influences, regional favourites and melting-pot fusion – the culinary heritage of a nation, from appetizers to desserts and beyond. A unique state-by-state section features essays and menus from a 'who's who' of 100 foremost food experts and chefs.