Here's my recipe I've honed over the years:
1.5 lb spiral pasta
3 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup chopped red onion
3 cloves chopped garlic
1/4 cup flour
1/3 cup sour cream
1 tbsp chopped parsley
2 tbsp chopped thyme
1 tbsp chopped basil
3 egg yolks
salt and pepper to taste
3 strips bacon
3/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
*note For the cheese I prefer to use a 30-50-20 blend of gruyere, Irish cheddar, and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Overall you should have about 26 ounces of shredded cheeses. Do the math .. you can really use whatever kind of cheeses you want but I think it's key with mac & cheese to have a smart combination of sweet, nutty, salty and different textured cheeses. Experiment until you find the combo you like. There really are endless possibilites and so many different flavors you can make.
1. Preheat the oven to 400. Grease (use butter or Pam) a 10" cast-iron skillet.
2. Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water untill al dente. Drain and return to the pot.
3. In a large saucepan bring the cream to a simmer with the onion and garlic. Meanwhile, cook bacon until crisp and set aside to cool.
4. Remove 1 cup of the cream to a bowl and whisk in the flour; return the mixture to the saucepan. Whisk over moderate heat until thickened, 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
5. Stir in the gruyere and cheddar and half of the Parmigiano until melted. Slowly incorporate the sour cream, parsley, thyme and salt and pepper.
6. In a separate bowl, whisk 1 cup of the sauce with the egg yolks, then stir the mixture into the saucepan.
7. Pour the sauce over the pasta, then add cooked/chopped bacon and stir to incorporate.
8. Pour the pasta in the cast-iron skillet and top with the remaining Parmigiano and Panko bread crumbs. Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes, or until the Mac and Cheese is bubbling and golden. Let rest for 10 minutes, then serve.
This post was edited on 11/20 at 12:53 pm