Luke Dale-Roberts’s cauliflower mac and cheese with sultana salsa

luke dale robert's cauliflower mac and cheese with sultana salsa

We challenged The Test Kitchen's talented chef to tackle one of the classics. The result? A superlatively creamy dish with beautiful touches of sweetness from the sultanas and nuttiness from the toasted pine nuts. No espuma gun lying around at home? We reckon it'll still taste pretty incredible even without the foaminess!

Serves: 6


25g parmesan
400g cauliflower
250ml cream
3 egg yolks
2 tablespoons butter
50g sultanas
100ml port
50g toasted pine nuts
3 sage leaves, finely sliced
1 box rigatoni pasta
50g gruyère
50g comté


You will also need:
microplane or grater, Thermomix or blender, chinois, espuma gun, and oven-proof baking dish.

For the foam:
Roughly chop cauliflower, place in a pan with cream and cook down. Microplane or grate parmesan onto grease-proof paper and bake until lightly golden for around 5 minutes. Set aside.

Once water has cooked out from the cauliflower, blend with the toasted parmesan in the Thermomix or a blender on full for 7 minutes. Set aside 100ml, and blend 3 egg yolks into the remaining sauce. Pass through a chinois and pour into the espuma gun, charge once then set aside.

Blanch rigatoni and drain, then coat in the cauliflower-parmesan sauce that was set aside earlier. Trim the base off each piece of pasta and stand them up next to each other in the oven-proof baking dish. Microplane the gruyère and comté to cover the pasta. Shake the espuma gun and coat the pasta with the cauliflower-parmesan foam, until the grated cheese is no longer visible. Grill for 5 minutes or until brown.

For the salsa:
Steep the sultanas in port and set aside. In a hot pan, brown your butter and add capers, sultanas, thyme and pine nuts. Finish with sage.

Top the pasta bake with the salsa and serve.

Recipe by Luke Dale-Roberts of The Test Kitchen.

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