My husband adores bacon. It seems like every time we go out to eat, he orders a bacon cheeseburger--probably because that's a meal I'd never make at home. But on occasion, I do use bacon in my cooking. I prefer to use a few slices to add flavor to a meal, instead of using bacon as one of the main ingredients in a recipe. This Roasted Tomato and Bacon Macaroni and Cheese gets it's wonderful flavor from a few slices of bacon and roasted cherry tomatoes.
Roasted Tomato and Bacon Macaroni and Cheese
2 cups of cavatappi or macaroni
2 strips of bacon
1/2 cup cherry or grape tomatoes
2 cups milk
6 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon red pepper
Salt and pepper
1. In baking dish, combine tomatoes with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast at 400 degrees about 20 minutes, or until tomatoes burst.
2. Meanwhile, saute bacon over medium heat until crispy. Remove from pan and place on a paper towel.
3. Cook pasta for 2 minutes less than package recommends. Drain and set aside.
4. In sauce pan, melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and whisk constantly for one minute. Add milk, salt, red pepper, and black pepper and continue whisking. Reduce heat to low and cook milk for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add cheese.
5. In large bowl, combine pasta and cheese sauce. Pour in tomatoes and their juices. Crumble bacon and add to pasta.
6. Pour pasta back into baking dish used to cook tomatoes. Top with bread crumbs.
7. Bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes.