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spicy jalapeño mac and cheese


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Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Total: 55 minutes

Servings: 6


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Step 1

Fry 9oz/250g bacon in a large deep pan over medium heat until your desired texture. Add 3 diced and deseeded jalapeños and fry for a couple of minutes until soft. Drain away excess fat if necessary, then melt in 3 tbsp butter.

Step 2

Stir in 3 heaped tbsp flour until a paste forms, then very gradually stir in 4cups/1litre milk until lump free. Add 1 tbsp mustard, 1/2 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1/4 tsp cayenne and 1 tsp hot sauce, then allow to bubble until thickened, stirring occasionally. Adjust spice as necessary (more hot sauce and/or cayenne pepper). Important to thicken sauce before adding cheese (step 4), don't add cheese to thicken sauce, will loose flavour and will produce a grainy texture.

Step 3

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 200C/390F and cook 14oz/400g pasta in salted boiling water until al dente (take a few mins off the packet instruction, you want it still quite hard).

Step 4

Once thickened, turn off heat and stir in 2cups/200g cheddar & mozzarella and 1/2cup/40g parmesan (save other half to top). Taste for seasoning. Stir in your pasta and transfer to a baking dish. It might seem overly stringy/saucy but will smooth out in the oven.

Step 5

Top with the rest of your parmesan, 1/2cup/30g breadcrumbs, then the rest of your jalapeño. Finish with by spraying with oil then pop in the oven for 20-25mins or until golden a bubbly.