Preheat oven to 350* grease 1 ½ quart deep baking dish (I use 2 quart)
In a medium saucepan bring to a rolling boil:
6 cups of water , 1 ½ teaspoons of salt
Add and cook just til tender:
2 cups of elbow macaroni (8 ounces) (I do close to the whole box)
Drain and remove to large bowl, HAVE READY:
2 ¼ cup (I do 3+cups) grated sharp cheddar (I use extra sharp) cheese
Melt in large saucepan over med-low heat:
2 tablespoons of butter (I use 3ish)
Whisk in and cook, whisking 3 minutes:
2 tablespoons of all purpose flour
Gradually whisk in 2 cups of milk (whole or skim is fne)
½ minced white onion, 1 bay leaf, and ½ tsp sweet paprika
Simmer gently, stirring often, for 15 mins. Remove from heat and stire in 2/3 of the cheese. Season with salt and black ground pepper for taste.
Sit in max and pour half of the mixture into baking dish and sprinkle with half of the remaining cheese. Top with remaining mac and then the rest of the cheese.
Mel in small skillet over med heat:
1 tbsp of butter (I use more, say 2 ½ )
add and toss to coat:
½ cup of breadcrumbs (I use 1+ cups)
Sprinkle over top of mac, bake until breadcrumbs are lightly browned, about 30 mins… let stand 5 mins before serving and ENJOY!!!!!