You guys will come to know, if you don't already, that I love to cook. I love it as much as I love to sew and that's A LOT. So, tonight, I made macaroni and cheese because that's what the snowy cold weather told me to put on the table. I used my own recipe for it, which I have decided to share with you. Unfortunately, I didn't take any pictures, so you'll just have to imagine it's gooey, cheesy yumminess on your own.
Kristi's Macaroni & Cheese with Bacon and Tomatoes
1 16oz box Elbow Macaroni Noodles
2 Chicken Breasts seasoned with:
Fresh Cracked Pepper
4 Tablespoons Butter
4 Tablespoons Flour
4 Cups Milk
2 Bay Leaves
1 Can Diced Tomatoes with Chiles (like Ro*Tel)
4 Cups Shredded Mexican Cheese (I use the pre-grated stuff in the bag)
4 Bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
"Fresh" Breadcrumbs from Day-Old Bread
Cook your noodles according to package directions (be sure to salt your water), drain and stir in 1 Tablespoon butter, return to strainer and set aside. In the meantime, season the chicken and saute in a frying pan coated with cooking spray until cooked through. Dice chicken and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350*, coat a lasagna pan with cooking spray and set aside.
In the same pot that you cooked the macaroni noodles, melt 4 Tablespoons of butter. Whisk in flour and cook for 2 minutes. Slowly add the milk, whisking quickly (say that five times fast!) to break up any lumps. Add your bay leaves & tomatoes and let simmer on Medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring often. Remove from heat and add the cheese. Stir in diced chicken and then add the macaroni. Pour into lasagna pan, and sprinkle with bacon and breadcrumbs.
Bake for 15-25 minutes or until bubbly and golden brown.
Please come back and leave me a comment if you make this, I'd love to hear how you liked it.
PS I have also made this with a kick by sauteeing 1 tablespoon of chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce with 1 minced onion and 1 chopped green bell pepper. Stir into the cheese sauce with a teaspoon of the adobo sauce from the can of chipotle peppers.