Spaghetti Cacio de Pepe

Spaghetti noodles are a big no-no in our household, but when I stumbled across this recipe I knew I had to bend the rules.  At least just this once.


The simplicity of these ingredients is initially what intrigued me.  Pasta, cheese and pepper.  I mean…What? How? Really? That’s all there is to it?!


I wasn’t sure what to expect with this.  I pondered the questions “Is this a meal? Should it be a side dish? Do I need to make a salad?”.  Since I was pressed for time that day I decided at the very last minute that it would be a meal and I even began to prepare myself for all of the typical complaints “Where’s the meat!? You know I don’t like Spaghetti!!!  No bread??” <insert eye roll>


I taste tested per usual before plating, and let me tell you…I personally couldn’t wait to dive in! With only a slight hesitation I watched as the boys took their first bites.  I was thrilled when Dominic, said “It’s really good, mom!”.  And coming from the pickiest of eaters…that was music to my ears!


I can totally see this becoming  a new comfort food for us.  Or even a go-to as a side dish for a summertime BBQ.  Its rich, its creamy, its even a little peppery too!  It is simply delicious! ๐Ÿ™‚



1 TBSP fresh ground pepper

4 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil (good quality is important)

2 TBSP kosher salt

1 lb. spaghetti

3/4 C  grated Pecorino Romano

3/4 C grated Parmigiano-Reggiano




  • In a large pot, bring enough water for the spaghetti to cook in to a roaring boil.  Add the salt.
  • Cook the spaghetti for two minutes less than the package indicates.
  • Meanwhile, over a low heat, warm the pepper and olive oil in another pot.
  • Once the pepper and olive oil are hot, turn the heat off.  Add 1/2 C of the hot spaghetti water into the pot.
  • When the spaghetti is ready, use tongs and transfer the pasta to the pot with the olive oil and pepper.  Reserve the cooking water.
  • Turn the heat back on low under the pot that now holds the olive oil, pepper and spaghetti.
  • Turn the spaghetti continuously until most of the water has absorbed.
  • Then transfer it to a large bowl.
  • Add the two cheeses a couple of handfuls at a time while still tossing.  If the pasta starts to get dry, add 2 to 3 TBSP of the pasta water.  Keep tossing and adding cheese and pasta water until all the cheese has been incorporated and the cheese has turned into  a creamy sauce.  Eat immediately.  ENJOY!

kitchen tunes: 100 years/five for fighting

recipe from: Food52



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