Serving of twisted mac and cheese, in a pot.

Twisted Mac and Cheese

Semi-inspired by the Hard Rock Café's dish of the same name.


(To serve 3). 30 mins-ish, including vegetable and chicken prep.

  • 1 chicken breast (~250g),
  • ~250ml milk,
  • ~25g unsalted butter,
  • ~2 tbsp. plain flour,
  • 300g pasta,
  • Ample cheese, grated (mainly base cheese like Cheddar, with some flavour cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano and Pecorino),
  • 1 bell pepper (of your choosing),
  • Sea salt, black pepper,
  • Olive oil,
  • Paprika,
  • Chilli/red pepper flakes,
  • Cayenne pepper.


Chicken etc.

  • Salt chicken breast 24 hours before, refrigerate and cover.
  • Thinly slice chicken breast. Season with black pepper.
  • Dice (1cm) pepper.
  • Add olive oil to pan, heat till shimmering.
  • Add chicken, fry and turn until all pieces change colour.
  • Add diced pepper, toss, and add a generous portion of paprika, chilli flakes and cayenne pepper.
  • Fry.


  • Generously salt a potful of water, bring to the boil.
  • Add pasta, simmer till al dente. Drain, saving some of the pasta water for later.


  • Heat milk in saucepan (not to boiling or burning).
  • Roux – melt butter in separate saucepan, add flour and and stir continuously for a few minutes.
  • When roux sufficiently done, add and mix in milk by small doses. Stir over medium-high heat until thickened.
  • Add some reserved pasta water, add cheese. Stir. This should greatly thicken the sauce. If in doubt, grate more.


  • Add chicken and diced pepper from frying pan, fold into sauce.
  • Taste, season with sea salt and black pepper as needed.
  • Add pasta, fold into sauce. Serve.


4/5, easy and quick to make. Tastes close enough to my memory of the dish for something I came up with on a whim, which is a bonus.