How to make it

  • Pasta Preparation : Cook the pasta according to package directions. Under cook by about 5 minutes, since the pasta will finish cooking in the sauce, absorbing the flavors. Drain, rinse and set aside.
  • Sauce Preparation - Heat the butter and olive oil together over medium-high heat in a sauce pan. Add the ground beef or pork. Then the garlic and cook until the meat starts to brown. Add the ham or bacon. Stir and cook for a few minutes. Add all the chopped vegetables (if you are using canned tomato instead of the fresh) and cook, stirring, until the vegetables start to soften. Add the tomato paste and stir. Pour in the meat broth. Season with salt, pepper and some sugar. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes.
  • Cream-Cheese Toppings Preparation - At the same time, while the sauce simmers, you can prepare the cream-cheese topping. Melt the butter in a saucepan. When already foamy and in bubbles (frothy), add the flour all at once, stirring. Let the flour cook for about 5 minutes to remove any flour taste. Tip : You will know that the flour is cooked when the mixture starts to turn golden brown. Pour in the water in a thin stream, stirring as you do. (You will notice that the sauce is lumpy and heavy). Pour in the milk slowly, again, stirring along side. When all the milk has been incorporated into the mixture, it will become thin. Add the cheeses. The cheese will give the mixture the required consistency (thick yet creamy). Set the heat to low and wait until the cheeses melt, stirring the mixture occasionally. Season with salt and pepper. You may no turn off the heat.
  • Baked Mac Assembly - When the sauce is done, add the cooked pasta and toss well. Let the mixture cook over low heat with an occasional stirring. This should allow the pasta to finish cooking for 5-7 minutes.
  • Pour the pasta and sauce into a baking dish. Keep it in mind to put extra space enough so that it may still accommodate the toppings on top.
  • Pour the topping onto the pasta mixture, spreading to seal the edges. If you don’t seal the edges, the exposed pasta will dry up during baking.
  • 5. Baking the Mac - Bake in a preheated 180oC oven for 25-35 minutes or until the top is lightly browned. I prefer a little browning on the top, since I find it more delicious. But remember not to over do it since it may have a tendency to get burned (it will taste bitter)
  • 6. Ready to Eat - Let the baked macaroni rest for about 15-25 minutes before cutting so that it will settle. Serve with garlic sticks or buttered toast.

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