Baked Mac and Cheese

Satisfying party food: This Baked Mac and Cheese is served in individual soufflé/portion cups and makes 30 servings. It can be assembled two days in advance. Keep covered in refrigerator. Bake just before guests arrive. Place in a low (200°) oven to keep warm.

Baked Mac and Cheese
Yield: 2 1⁄2 dozen servings
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Ingredients
  1. 1 (12-ounce) package bacon
  2. 2 tablespoons butter
  3. 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  4. 2 cups half-and-half
  5. 1 (8-ounce) package fontina cheese, shredded
  6. 1 (1-pound) box penne pasta, cooked according to package directions
  7. 1 1⁄2 teaspoons kosher salt
  8. 3⁄4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  9. 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  10. 1⁄2 cup Japanese bread crumbs (panko)
  11. 1⁄2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400°. Place 30 (3.25-ounce) paper soufflé/portion cups in muffin cups (see note). Set aside.
  2. In a large Dutch oven, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp. Crumble bacon and set aside; discard rendered bacon fat. In same pan, melt butter. Add flour, whisking to combine. Add half-and-half, and whisk until smooth. Simmer over medium heat for 5 minutes. Reduce heat and add fontina, whisking until cheese is melted and mixture is smooth. Add cooked pasta, bacon, salt, pepper, and parsley, stirring to combine. Spoon pasta into soufflé cups. Sprinkle bread crumbs over pasta.
  3. Bake until bread crumbs are lightly browned, approximately 20 minutes. Sprinkle with Parmesan, and serve warm.
Note
  1. Paper soufflé/portion cups are available at restaurant supply stores.
Taste of the South https://www.tasteofthesouthmagazine.com/

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