How to make hominy casserole with bacon and cheese

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It really doesn't get more American than hominy, and the recipe below is one of our all-time favorite ways to serve it. It's got bacon, cheese, and jalapeno to make it incredibly flavorful, and diced red bell pepper adds a beautiful spot of color.
Hominy, which you can find in the international foods aisle in most supermarkets, is a product made from dried field corn treated in a dilute solution of lye. The result is a softer corn that's puffy, chewy, and has a unique flavor that pairs really well with cheese in this casserole. If you want the casserole to have a bit of a spicier flavor, leave in the jalapeño seeds and membranes; otherwise, remove them to retain just the slightly floral aroma of the chile.
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8 slices bacon
1 onion, finely diced
1 red bell pepper, finely diced
1 jalapeño, minced
1 30-ounce can hominy, drained and rinsed
3/4 cup half-and-half
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cook the bacon in a cast-iron skillet until crispy (if you don't have a cast-iron skillet, do this in a frying pan). Set aside to cool.
Add the onion and red bell pepper to the bacon fat, and cook until slightly browned, about 10 minutes. Add the jalapeño and cook 1 minute, or until fragrant.
Stir in the hominy and half-and-half, and cook until bubbly. Remove from the heat.
Chop the bacon into pieces about 1/2 inch wide. Add to the skillet and stir to combine. (If you don't have a cast-iron skillet, transfer the mixture to a baking pan.)
Top the hominy with the grated cheese, and bake for about 15-20 minutes, or until bubbly and browned on top.
Cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.
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