The most delicious, simple pasta recipe you will ever make with just four ingredients.
Course: Main Course
Keyword: cacio e pepe, pecorino recipe, roman pasta
6-8ouncespasta*spaghetti or bucatini recommended
3ouncesfinely grated pecorino cheese parm works if you're in a pinch
1tspfresh cracked pepper
3Tbspextra virgin olive oil
Bring a large pot of generously salted water to boil.
While you're waiting for your water to come to a boil, grate your cheese. Cheese should be finely grated -- use a microplane zester for best results. Set aside a handful of cheese for topping at the end. Crack pepper into a small, separate bowl until you have about a teaspoon.
Add pasta to boiling water, and cook until not quite al dente (al dente is typically one minute less than package instructions- cooked but still firm). For spaghetti this is about 8 minutes. Remove 1 cup of pasta water from pot and set aside.
Just before pasta is done, heat olive oil over medium heat in a large sauce pan or skillet. Add crushed black pepper and cook for 1 minute. Add 1/2 cup of the pasta water to oil/pepper and bring to a simmer. Using tongs, add pasta to pepper and pasta water. Cook on medium high for about one minute. Remove from heat. Add pecorino to pasta, stirring vigorously (this prevents clumping of cheese) until well combined and pasta is al dente. Cheese/pepper/pasta water should transform into a glossy coating over pasta. You may add additional pasta water if needed, one tablespoon at a time.
Serve immediately with remaining pecorino cheese and additional fresh cracked pepper.
*If you prefer your pasta more coated with the cheese and pepper, make it with 6 ounces of pasta. If you'd like to use a clean half-pound of pasta or prefer a slightly bigger serving, you can increase to 8 ounces.Note: This recipe serves two people. If you'd like to make it for four, just simply double the recipe.