15-Minute Cacio e Pepe Recipe Tastes Like It's Straight Outta Rome by Donna John
Americans have mac and cheese. The Romans have cacio e pepe ("cheese and pepper"). While that sounds like a simple dish (and it is), the flavor and texture is beyond reproach.
I was lucky enough to eat cacio e pepe in Rome a few years ago. There are no words. This easy cacio e pepe recipe is on the table in 15 minutes.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2 to 3
- 6 ounces spaghetti noodles
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup grated Pecorino cheese
Here’s how you make it:
- Cook the spaghetti in salted water until it’s firm, not tender. Drain and reserve 3/4 cup of the pasta cooking water.
- While the pasta cooks, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a skillet. Add the pepper and cook, stirring, about 1 minute.
- Add in about a 1/2 cup of pasta water and bring to a simmer. Add remaining butter and pasta. Reduce heat to low and add Parmesan cheese. Stir until melted. Add Pecorino cheese, remove pan from heat and stir until cheese melts (use tongs).
- Add a little more pasta water, if needed.
- Pour into a large pasta serving bowl and top with a sprinkling of cheese. Serve immediately.
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