Lindsay Ann Bakes: {VIDEO} Mac and Cheese Bites (Baked OR Fried)

Sunday, April 17, 2016

{VIDEO} Mac and Cheese Bites (Baked OR Fried)

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Cheesy macaroni, baked or fried in a golden brown crispy breadcrumb coating. Perfect for game day, party appetizer, lunch boxes and more!




CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE VIDEO ON YOUTUBE




Boil your pasta until al dente while you make the cheese sauce.







Put it all together!



Spread macaroni in an an 8-inch baking dish and refrigerate until nice and firm. Them slice into little bite sized triangles.



Coat macaroni bites in some flour, egg wash, and last, coat in the breadcrumbs. Once all the bites have been breaded, put them in the freezer for at least 1 hour to ensure a crispy coating.



Bake them right on a cooling rack until crispy, or fry them in oil on the stovetop.





Enjoy!



Mac and Cheese Bites (Fried or Baked)

Yield: ~24 bites

Ingredients

Mac & Cheese
  • 8 oz dried elbow macaroni 
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter 
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour 
  • 2 cups whole milk OR half and half, cold 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper, or to taste 
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon dry ground mustard 
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg 
  • 8 oz (2 cups) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
  • 4 oz (1 cups) shredded Gruyere, fontina, Colby jack, white cheddar, or cheese of choice
  • vegetable oil for frying

Coating
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2-4 tablespoons of milk or water
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs (if baking, add 1/2 cup vegetable oil)


Directions
Add pasta to a large pot of boiling, salted water, and cook the pasta until al dente according to package directions; drain and set aside.

To make the sauce, melt butter over medium-low heat. Add flour, and cook for 1 minute, whisking constantly to remove any lumps. Whisk in half and half, and cook for about 5-8 minutes, stirring frequently, until mixture starts to bubble and thicken. You will know the sauce is ready when the back of a wooden spoon is coated and you can leave a line with your finger without the sauce running. Season with salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, dry mustard and nutmeg. Turn off heat and stir in cheese until melted. Mix together sauce and pasta and stir to coat.

Line an 8-inch baking dish with parchment and spray with non-stick spray. Spread macaroni mixture evenly in dish, packing it down slightly. Cover and refrigerate overnight, or at least 3-4 hours, until firm and cheese has congealed.

Place flour in a shallow bowl with the cayenne, salt and pepper. Beat egg and milk together in a second bowl, and breadcrumbs in a third bowl. Remove mac and cheese from dish and slice into triangles.

Coat macaroni bites in the flour mixture, then dip into egg mixture, and last, coat in the breadcrumbs, until fully covered. Once all the bites have been breaded, put them in the freezer for at least 1 hour to ensure a crispy coating. Bake or fry (directions below).

Bake:
Add ¼ cup of vegetable oil to the breadcrumbs mixture before coating mac and cheese triangles. Preheat oven to 425ºF. Place bites on a baking rack over a baking sheet and spray the rack with non-stick cooking spray. Bake for about 15 minutes, flipping half way through, until golden brown all over. Serve warm.

Fry:
Pour enough oil in a large nonstick skillet, so it comes about ¼-½-inch up the pan. Heat over medium heat until oil reaches 350ºF. Fry about 5-6 at a time, in a single layer, flipping half way through, until all sides are crisp and golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain. Serve warm.


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