Taste of the South

Cheesy Comfort

Loaded Mac and Cheese

MAKES 10 TO 12 SERVINGS

We love how the super-cheesy sauce clings to every nook and cranny of the cavatappi pasta in this crowd-pleasing dish.

¼ cup unsalted butter
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
½ teaspoon dry mustard
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
4 cups whole milk
1 cup sour cream
4 cups shredded Colby-Jack cheese blend, divided
1 pound cavatappi pasta, cooked according to package directions
4 tablespoons chopped fresh chives, divided
½ cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
4 slices thick-cut bacon, cooked and crumbled
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

1. Preheat oven to 350°.

2. In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour, garlic, salt, Worcestershire, mustard, and pepper; cook for 2 minutes. Whisk in milk and sour cream until smooth; bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 4 minutes. Whisk in 3½ cups cheese, stirring until melted. Stir in cooked pasta and 2 tablespoons chives until combined.

3. In a small bowl, stir together bread crumbs, bacon, melted butter, remaining ½ cup cheese, and remaining 2 tablespoons chives. Sprinkle over pasta mixture.

4. Bake until golden brown and bubbly, 15 to 20 minutes.

Pimiento Cheese Hand Pies

MAKES 24

Double down on your Southern food favorites with this crispy, cheesy combo.

3 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon smoked paprika
¼ teaspoon hot sauce
1⅛ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1¾ cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1 (4-ounce) jar diced pimientos, drained and patted dry
2 (14.1-ounce) packages refrigerated piecrusts
1 large egg
1 teaspoon water

1. Preheat oven to 400°. Line several large baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium bowl, whisk together cream cheese, mayonnaise, garlic powder, paprika, hot sauce,

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