Here’s a classic Italian cacio e pepe pasta! A simple al dente spaghetti dish with loads of grated parmesan cheese and a good dash of freshly ground pepper… This pasta dinner is just sublime!
Have you ever heard of this dish before?
Cacio e pepe or cheese and pepper pasta is the Italian version of the world famous mac ‘n cheese! In other words: how simply delicious could it be. It’s one of those rare recipes (like ‘meatball sandwich’ of course) whose title includes all the needed ingredients: pasta, cheese and pepper.
No need for a shopping list this time.
This wonderful recipe doesn’t call for any further explanation.
But as I’m in a good food mood today (I always am actually, for the record) I’ll include the preparation method anyway. It’s your lucky day: prepare for a little pasta heaven because this pasta with cheese is so goo-ood.
Cacio e Pepe (Italian Pepper & Cheese Spaghetti)
Decide for yourself how much freshly ground black pepper you can stand.
Don’t get all too excited when you are preparing this meal or you risk turning it into something absolutely inedible slash lethal. I love a good dash of heat in my food but I found out after making this pasta dish a few times that half a tablespoon of freshly crushed black peppercorns is enough for the hubs and me.
Some like it hotter, some don’t.
You know best what level of spicy you can handle, right.
Don’t you have parmesan cheese in your fridge of pantry?
Then you can replace the grated parmesan cheese by another type of (preferably hard) cheese if you like such as pecorino or dry jack. They both contain a creamy and salty balance that doesn’t disappear after warming it through.
Do you love pasta recipes with loads of cheese?
Then also check out another famous classic Italian cheese pasta: this pasta alfredo!
- 9 oz dry pasta (250 g)
- 4,5 oz parmesan cheese (125 g), grated
- 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
- Bring a large pan of salted water to a rolling boil over high heat and add the pasta.
- Cook the pasta until tender. In the meantime transfer the freshly ground black pepper to a large mixing bowl.
- Drain the pasta but keep 1/2 cup (120 ml) of the cooking liquid aside and add it to the pepper in the mixing bowl. Add the drained pasta and toss to combine.
- Stir in the grated parmesan.
- Toss until the cheese has melted fully.
- Divide the cheese pasta between deep plates. Season with more pepper to taste if necessary. Serve the pasta immediately while hot.