Mac n’ Cheese With Bacon & Leeks
Mac n’ Cheese With Bacon & LeeksServes 4
Oil for frying
100g bacon lardons or pancetta
1 leek, trimmed and finely sliced
40g butter, plus extra for greasing
40g plain flour
1 tsp Dijon mustard
700ml full-fat milk
150g Mature Cheddar, grated
250g dried macaroni
30g white breadcrumbs
50g Pecorino or Parmesan cheese, finely grated
salt and white pepper
Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6 and grease a large ovenproof dish.
Fry the bacon in a dry frying pan until golden. Add a drizzle of oil and the leeks and cook for 4-6 minutes until softened and just beginning to brown. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a low heat. Stir in the plain flour and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the mustard and over a very low heat gradually whisk in the milk.
Turn up the heat a little, stirring constantly, until it boils and thickens. Take the pan off the heat and add the cheese, stirring until melted. Season with lots of white pepper and a little salt.
Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and stir in the macaroni. Cook according to the packet instructions, or until al dente, drain well and add to the cheese sauce along with the bacon and leeks.
Pour the macaroni into a pie dish (approx. 26 x 18 x 5 cm). Mix the breadcrumbs with the Parmesan and scatter over the top of the macaroni.
Bake for 15- 20 minutes, or until golden-brown and bubbling. Serve immediately.