This Roman dish literally translates to “cheese and pepper,” which is almost the whole dish! Although the ingredient list is short, there are some key tricks to this dish to help you bring out the true elegance of Cacio e Pepe!
For starters, noodle choice is important. We prefer to use bucatini, a thin noodle with enough weight to pick up the right amount of cheese and pepper. Also, many recipes call for Pecorino Romano, which is important for this dish because of that cheese’s innate saltiness. And lastly, by saving a little bit of leftover water from boiling your pasta, the steam created will melt the cheese wonderfully on top of the noodles. Try this recipe out for yourself and experience why fewer ingredients can mean more flavor!
Bucatini Cacio e Pepe
- 1 pound bucatini pasta
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cracked black peppercorn
- 1 1/2 cups grated Pecorino Romano
- Garlic salt (to taste)
- Heat 6 quarts of water in a large pot until water begins to boil.
- Boil bucatini for 9 minutes or until al dente. Then drain into a large colander, making sure to save several cups of the water in a glass bowl (for step 4).
- Saute your cracked pepper in a saucepan on medium heat for 2 minutes.
- Pour 1/2 cup of excess pasta water into your saucepan.
- Add cooked bucatini to the saucepan on top of the black pepper and water.
- Sprinkle 1 cup of Pecorino Romano on top of your pasta.
- Add a pinch of garlic salt and toss your ingredients so that the cheese and pepper begin to cling to the bucatini.
- Remove from heat and let cool. Top with remaining 1/2 cup of Pecorino Romano.
Recipe adapted from Saveur