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Author Notes: The combination of avocado purée and pepper jack cheese elevates the classic macaroni and cheese dish. Extra creamy, light, and delectable, this recipe is simple but delicious and will change the way you look at mac 'n cheese. —Erin Hargis
Makes 4 portions
- 8 ounces dry macaroni noodles
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 cup pepper jack cheese, grated
- 1 1/2 large, ripe avocados
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 8 slices of bacon
- 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup fresh corn kernels
- Preheat oven 350°F. Bring water to a boil and cook the macaroni noodles 1 minute less than package instructions.
- While water is coming to a boil and pasta is cooking, add 1 avocado to a food processor with the white vinegar and puree until smooth. If necessary, add 1-2 T of water in order to get a smooth consistency. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter before whisking in the flour to make a roux. Next, whisk in the heavy cream ⅓ at a time, waiting until the sauce has thickened before adding more. Once all the cream is added and has just begun to simmer, whisk in the cheese ⅓ at a time until smooth. Season to taste with salt. Remove from heat and allow to cool 1 minute.
- Add the avocado puree to the cheese sauce and whisk until well combined. Cook bacon until crispy, drain onto paper towels and crumble 6 of the 8 slices.
- Add the avocado cheese sauce to the cooked, drained pasta and fold together until evenly coated. Fold in the crumbled bacon.
- Divide the pasta into four small, oven-safe ramekins and top with panko bread crumbs. Bake, uncovered, 10-15 minutes or until the bread crumbs have slightly browned.
- While the macaroni bakes, place the corn kernels in a dry, non-stick pan over medium-low heat and roast until slightly dehydrated and caramelized, tossing occasionally. Be patient, this will take 15 minutes or more.
- When macaroni has baked, slice the remaining ½ avocado into cubes and roughly chop the remaining bacon. Garnish the macaroni with avocado, roasted corn, and the remaining bacon. Serve immediately.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Avocados