Smoked Gouda & Panchetta Mac & Cheese
1/4 lb panchetta, sliced thick
6 tbsp unsalted butter
1 lb elbow macaroni
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
6 tbsp all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cup whole milk (do not substitute)
1 3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 lb smoked gouda (grated)
8 oz gouda (grated)
1. Preheat oven to 400. Saute panchetta over medium heat until crisp in large saucepan. Drain pan of drippings.
2. Bring 1 gallon of water to boil and add 1 tbsp salt. Add macaroni and cook until almost tender, but still firm to the bite. Drain and set aside.
2. Add butter to saucepan and melt over medium heat, scraping off bits left from panchetta. Stir in garlic, mustard, and cayenne. Cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
3. Whisk in flour and cook until golden, about 1 minute. Slowly whisk in milk and broth. Bring to a simmer and cook over medium heat until slightly thickened, about 6 minutes.
4. Remove pan from heat and stir in cheese a handful at a time. Make sure last handful is melted before adding next handful. Crumble bacon and add to sauce.
5. Mix sauce and macaroni in 9×13 baking dish. Bake until slightly browned and bubbly around edges, around 25-30 minutes. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.
*Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook, 3rd edition.