Jack Daniel's Mac & Cheese with Grand Cheddar — Week 11: Spirits
I love spirits, with their spicy, fruity, caramelized and often smoky flavours. Made to be sipped slowly, especially when sitting in a comfortable armchair by the fire.
Given this week’s Spirits theme, I decided to make a mac & cheese with a creamy Agropur Grand Cheddar aged 2 years and whisky sauce. The whisky adds a rich, smoky, lightly caramelized flavour to the sauce.
I then lacquered bacon with Jack Daniel’s and maple syrup and used it as a delicious topping.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
- In a small pot, heat the Jack Daniel’s and maple syrup until reduced by half.
- In a pan, cook the bacon until it starts to turn golden. Add the Jack Daniel’s reduction and continue cooking until bacon is golden and caramelized. Set aside.
- In a pot, melt the butter and soften the garlic.
- Add the flour and stir for 1 minute, making sure the flour doesn’t brown.
- Add the milk, beating with a whisk to obtain a smooth sauce.
- Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring regularly until sauce thickens.
- Mix half the cheese, followed by the pasta and half of the chopped bacon into the sauce. Pour into a baking dish, cover with the remaining bacon, the rest of the cheese and breadcrumbs previously mixed with the melted butter.
- Bake 15 minutes or until golden. Garnish with the Jack Daniel's-caramelized bacon.