Mac and Cheese

with Pancetta and Breadcrumbs
Paired with 2012 threesome

Serves 10-12 as a side
Make in a small mini muffin tin.

Ingredients:

  • Kosher salt
  • Vegetable oil
  • ½ pound macaroni, cavatappi or penne (8 ounces)
  • 2 ½ cups milk
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 6 ounces Gruyere, grated (about 2 cups)
  • 8 ounces Pancetta
  • 4 ounces extra-sharp Cheddar, grated (about 1 cup)
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ¾ cup of breadcrumbs

Directions:

1.Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

2.Drizzle a bit of oil into a large pot of boiling salted water. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, or just slightly underdone. Rinse with cold water and drain well.

3.Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small saucepan over medium heat, but don't boil it. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a medium (2-quart) pot and add the flour. Cook over low heat for 2 minutes, stirring with a whisk. While whisking, add the hot milk and cook for a few minutes more, until thickened and smooth. Off the heat, add the Gruyere, Cheddar, ½ tablespoon kosher salt, pepper (¼ tsp) and nutmeg (¼ tsp). Add the cooked pasta and stir well. Pour into a 2-quart baking dish.

4.Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter, combine with the fresh bread crumbs, and sprinkle evenly over pasta and cheese sauce. Add Pancetta at this point, stir to combine. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes (in large baking dish) or in small bite size muffin tins, bake for approximately 10 minutes or until the sauce is bubbly and the pasta is browned on the top.

To reheat leftovers, cover with aluminum foil and warm in a 300 degree oven. Do not microwave.