Petit Rouge honeycomb mac and cheese

A luxurious take on a comfort food classic.
Honeycomb mac and cheese recipeBen Dearnley

Rigatoni rises up as a comfort classic hero to receive a standing ovation in this sophisticated take on mac and cheese. Also known as honeycomb pasta, this mac and cheese recipe is a showstopping centrepiece on any dinner table.

“L’Artisan Petit Rouge is made by a French cheesemaker in Australia from organic jersey milk and has a delicate sweetness,” says Simon Johnson’s cheese expert Victoria Lush of this dish’s hero ingredient.



1.For cheese sauce, combine garlic, lemon rind, mustard, milk, and cream in a saucepan. Add Petit Rouge, place over medium heat, and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until cheese has melted (4 minutes); strain through a fine sieve into a heatproof bowl.
2.Place 2 cups cheese sauce in a large bowl and reserve remaining sauce to serve. Add 60gm gouda and 30gm parmigiano to bowl and stir to combine; season to taste and set aside.
3.Cook pasta in a large saucepan of salted boiling water until just under al dente (6 minutes). Drain and refresh. Add to the bowl with cheese sauce and gently toss to coat.
4.Preheat oven to 220˚C fan-forced. Lightly grease a 20cm springform tin, line sides with baking paper. Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and stir until smooth and nut brown in colour (2 minutes). Spoon flour mixture into base of tin and sprinkle with 10gm each of Gouda and Parmigiano. Stand pasta upright in tin. Place on a oven tray and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake until top is golden and bubbling (20 minutes).
5.Cool for 10 minutes on a wire rack then run a palette knife around edge of pan and release.
6.Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Slide mac and cheese into pan and cook until golden and crisp (2-3 minutes). Invert onto a plate. Return remaining cheese sauce to a small saucepan and place over medium heat until warmed through (2-3 minutes). Serve mac and cheese with warmed cheese sauce and freshly cracked black pepper. Drizzle with olive oil, to serve.

L’Artisan Organic Petit Rouge is available from Simon Johnson and select delicatessens and cheese shops.


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