1. For the bread crumbs: Pulse bread and butter in food processor until crumbs are no larger than 1/8 inch, ten to fifteen 1-second pulses. Set aside.
2. For the pasta and cheese: Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat broiler. Bring 4 quarts water to boil in Dutch oven over high heat. Add macaroni and 1 tablespoon salt; cook until pasta is tender. It's crucial to cook the pasta until tende r- -just past the "al dente" stage. In fact, overcooking is better than undercooking. Drain and set aside in colander.
3. In now-empty Dutch oven, heat butter over medium-high heat until foaming. Add flour, mustard, and cayenne (if using) and whisk well to combine. Continue whisking until mixture becomes fragrant and deepens in color, about 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk; bring mixture to boil, whisking constantly (mixture must reach full boil to fully thicken). Reduce heat to medium and simmer, whisking occasionally, until thickened to consistency of heavy cream, about 5 minutes. Off heat, whisk in cheeses and 1 teaspoon salt until cheeses are fully melted. Add pasta and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is steaming and heated through, about 6 minutes.
4. Transfer mixture to broiler-safe 9-by 13-inch baking dish and sprinkle evenly with bread crumbs. Broil until crumbs are deep golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes, rotating pan if necessary for even browning. Cool about 5 minutes, then serve.
The recipe can be halved and baked in an 8-inch-square, broilersafe baking dish.
If desired, offer celery salt or hot sauce (such as Tabasco) for sprinkling at the table.
Using two cheeses added more "depth" in the flavors. I also increased the cayenne pepper a bit as we like it "hotter". The "servings" are quite generous. I'd estimate this recipe makes 10 "main dish" servings unless your family is the "hungry" type.
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (369g)|
|Recipe Makes: 8|
|Calories from Fat: 800 (71%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 88.9g||119 %|
|Saturated Fat 55.5g||278 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 23.4g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 3.8g|
|Cholesterol 238.2mg||73 %|
|Sodium 559.6mg||19 %|
|Potassium 268.5mg||7 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 60.1g||18 %|
|Dietary Fiber 3.4g||13 %|
|Sugars, other 56.7g|
|Protein 24.7g||35 %|
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Calories per serving: 1128
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