Chorizo Mac and Cheese

Recipe adapted from

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YIELD: 4 Servings

3 cups dried cavatappi or any swirled pasta
1 1/2 lb. fresh chorizo sausage, casings removed
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
4 Tbsp. unsalted butter
4 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 cups milk
4 cups freshly grated extra sharp cheddar cheese
Kosher salt, to taste

2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Bring a pot of water to a boil and add the pasta. Cook pasta according to the directions on the package. Drain when pasta is done cooking.

In a large skillet, brown chorizo over medium-high heat and break it up into pieces with a wooden spoon or spatula. Add bell pepper and cook until softened. Place chorizo and bell pepper into a large bowl and set aside.

Return skillet to medium-high heat and melt 4 tablespoons butter. Whisk in the flour and cook it for about 30 seconds to cook off the raw flour taste. Add the milk and let thicken, about 3-4 minutes. Add the cheese and salt and stir until all the cheese has melted. Remove from heat.

Add chorizo and bell pepper back in, toss to incorporate. Carefully add the pasta into the cheese sauce mixture and stir to incorporate everything evenly.

To make bread crumb topping, melt 2 tablespoons butter in a small microwave-safe bowl. Add bread crumbs and combine.

Grease a 9×13 casserole dish with cooking spray. Fill with chorizo and pasta mixture. Top with buttery bread crumbs if desired. Bake for 25-35 minutes until bubbly.