Cacio e Pepe Bucatini- A Roman Tradition
Reminiscing of our last summer vacation in Italy, here is an extremely quick and yet absolutely delicious recipe for Cacio e Pepe. I have been craving it since my last bite in Italy. A pasta dish like no others.
This regional dish from Rome, “Cacio e Pepe” means “Cheese and Pepper”.
As the name suggests the ingredients of this dish are very simple and include only black pepper, Pecorino Romano cheese, and of course pasta.
- To keep the moisture content of the pasta moist adds the cooking water. It will adhere to the pecorino and pasta, allows it to remain moist.
- Recommend using bucatini or spaghetti.
- To intensify the Pepe or pepper flavor, grind fresh cracked pepper to the pasta. There is no comparison with the flavor.
- Pecorino Romano, a sheep milk cheese that is aged. Freshly grated will bring so much flavor to this dish.
Difference between Pecorino Romano and Parmesan
The main difference between the cheeses is the milk. Parmesan cheese is from cow’s milk. Pecorino is from sheep’s milk.
They both differentiate in flavor. Parmesan is more fruity and milder. The Pecorino is stronger in flavor and spicier.
Pecorino is one of the oldest cheeses in Italy dating back to the Roman Age.
However, lots have changed since and since it is produced on the island of Sardinia, a small production in Lazio using whole fresh milk from local sheep.
Both fresh kinds of cheese are a staple in my refrigerator as dairy food is concerned.
You may also like:
Enjoy this wonderful and super easy dish and let your imagination transport you to Italy, even if temporarily.
Bucatini Cacio e Pepe
- 15 mins total
- 5 mins prep
- 10 mins cook
- serves 4
1 package of bucatini or spaghetti
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon coarse grind fresh cracked pepper
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to packaging direction to “Al Dente”
Reserve ¾ cup of the cooking water and drain the pasta.
Meanwhile, melt two tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the pepper and cook, swirling the pan until the butter melted and the pepper is slightly toasted. Add half of the reserved pasta water to the skillet and bring to simmer.
Add pasta and remaining butter. Reduce the heat to low and add pecorino cheese stirring and tossing with tongs until melted. Add more pasta water if the sauce seems dry.
Transfer to a bowl and serve hot.
If you liked my recipe, you’re sure to love these useful products and related dishes.