Austin Mac 'n' Cheese Suiza

Austin Mac 'n' Cheese Suiza
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 6Servings


  • Salt
  • 1 pound cavatappi or other short pasta
  • 1 pound tomatilloshusked, rinsed and halved
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated
  • 2 jalapeno chiles, seeded and chopped
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon cumin (about 1/3 palmful)
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped cilantro (a generous handful)
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • Pepper
  • 1 cup shredded Swiss cheese
  • 1 cup shredded monterey jack cheese
  • 2 cups crushed tortilla chips, preferably flaxseed
  • 1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 1 cup creme fraiche or sour cream, optional


Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt it, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, then return to the pot.

While the pasta is working, using a food processor, pulse the tomatillos until chopped. In a medium saucepan, heat the EVOO, 1 turn of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic and jalapenos and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the tomatillos, honey and cumin; season with salt. Simmer over low heat for 10 minutes. Stir in the cilantro and lime juice.

In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Whisk in the flour for 1 minute, then whisk in the milk and vegetable broth; season with salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the Swiss and monterey jack cheeses.

Preheat a broiler. Add the cheese sauce to the pasta and toss. Spread half of the pasta in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and top with half of the tomatillo sauce; repeat the layers. Sprinkle the chips and pepper jack cheese on top. Broil until browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve with the creme fraiche, if using.