"Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe"

“Cheese & Pepper” Spaghetti recipe – Spaghetti “Cacio e Pepe”

    • Prep Time
    • Minutes
    • Cook Time
    • Minutes

Total Cost: UK/£ 3.86*

Cost/portion: UK/£ 1.29*

Utensils you will need

One plate
One large bow
One pestle and mortar
One zester or grater
One 6lt saucepan
One ladle
One wooden spatulas or silicon spatulas
One pasta server (or a strainer)
One ladle (or a jug)

Note for the users: please click on the label “HOW TO” to watch the slide-show of each cooking step.

* Please note that both total cost and cost per portion are approximate and that can vary according to seasons and to different conditions.

Recipe Rating

  • (1 Rating)

Ingredients

  • for the sauce

  • Black pepper corns - 6gr

  • Pecorino Romano cheese - 160gr

  • Extra virgin olive oil - 20gr

  • for the pasta

  • Spaghetti -240gr

  • Fresh water - 5lt

  • Salt - 35gr

Instructions

  • 1.
    Putting the water to boil

    • Water - 5lt
    • Black pepper corns - 6gr
    • Pecorino Romano cheese - 160gr

      Put the saucepan with 5lt of water over a high heat. You will salt the water later (step 1 - pic.A).
      Finely crush the black pepper corns with pestle and mortar. Then, grate the Pecorino Romano cheese. Set aside (step 1 - pic.B).

    Note about salt and water for pasta

    If you think you might forget to salt water before adding pasta, you can salt water right after putting it on heat. This can become a safe routine, but the commonly unknown result of this is that it will require a longer time to come to the boiling temperature of 100ºC. It would be better instead to wait for the boiling to start and then carefully add the salt. The addiction of salt at this stage causes a sudden increase of the temperature of the solution for a couple of seconds during which the water increases the bubbling and risks to pour out if the pan’s sides are not sufficiently high.

    So the right pan should be taller than its diameter and capacious enough to contain a good amount of water.

    The minimum ratio between water and pasta is 1lt every 100gr. Although, for small amount of pasta it’s better to use a fairly large and deep pan which will keep the water to temperature also after dropping the pasta in. So that’s why I prefer to use 5lt of water even just to cook a single portion of pasta.

    Another important detail of which to take care, is the right quantity of salt to add to the water. It depends on the quantity of salt the condiment for pasta is going to contain and the cooking time that pasta requires; not only on your personal taste.

    A normal dose of salt is 11-12gr per litre of water and it can be increased to a maximum of 14-15gr for those who like their food to be particularly savoury. When using ingredients which are already salty themselves, like bacon or ham, the dose can be lowered to a minimum of 9-10gr per litre of water, as well as when you know that you will bind pasta with a lot of its own cooking water.

    Keep also in mind that longer cooking time require smaller doses of salt whereas quicker cooking will need a larger dose.

  • 2.
    Boiling the pasta and preparing the mixing bowl

    • Salt - 35gr
    • Spaghetti -240gr
    • Extra virgin olive oil - 20gr
    • The crushed pepper - about one third

      As soon as the water starts boiling, add the salt (step 2 - pic.A).
      Let the water come to a stable boiling again and add the spaghetti. Let them settle and soften for half a minute, then stir them with a pasta server and immerse the completely. Keep stirring from time to time to prevent them sticking to each other.
      You will need to strain them when perfectly cooked al dente: it should take from 10 to 12 minutes depending on the brand of pasta (check the instructions on the packaging) (step 2 - pic.B).
      Put the 20gr of extra virgin olive oil into the large bowl and add about one third of the crushed black pepper. Set aside (step 2 - pic.C).

      Note about the correct cooking point "al dente”

      “Al dente” literally means “to the tooth”. It indicates the perfect consistency that pasta, or any other food, should have at the end of the cooking process: not too soft and not too hard at chewing. Pasta cooked “al dente” maintains a harder consistency at the centre of the dough sheet which gives the diners a pleasant feeling of “biting” rather than “mushing” something under their teeth..

  • 3.
    Straining the pasta and mixing it to the cheese, pepper and cooking liquor

    • The boiled spaghetti
    • The bowl with extra virgin olive oil and pepper
    • The grated Pecorino Romano cheese
    • The crushed black pepper
    • The cooking liquor

      When perfectly cooked al dente, strain the spaghetti directly into the mixing bowl using a pasta server. Alternatively, collect at least half a litre of cooking liquor with a jug, then drain the spaghetti with a colander, but do not let them dry completely, then put them into the mixing bowl (step 3 - pic.A).
      The mixing process must be done quickly, so keep all the ingredients handy: the cheese, the pepper and the cooking liquor. Mix the spaghetti and coat them with the extra virgin olive oil and pepper (step 3 - pic.B).
      Add about 1/3 of a ladle of cooking liquor. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.C).
      Immediately add a handful of Pecorino Romano cheese and almost a teaspoon on crushed black pepper. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.D).
      Add again about 1/4 of a ladle of cooking liquor. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.E).
      Again add a handful of Pecorino Romano cheese and black pepper. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.F).
      Repeat this until the Pecorino Romano cheese and the black pepper are finished adding always less and less cooking liquor. This way you will end up with a smooth cream coating the spaghetti (step 3 - pic.G).
      Serve immediately.

"Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe""Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe"

Instructions

  • 1.
    Putting the water to boil

    • Water - 5lt
    • Black pepper corns - 6gr
    • Pecorino Romano cheese - 160gr

      Put the saucepan with 5lt of water over a high heat. You will salt the water later (step 1 - pic.A).
      Finely crush the black pepper corns with pestle and mortar. Then, grate the Pecorino Romano cheese. Set aside (step 1 - pic.B).

    Note about salt and water for pasta

    If you think you might forget to salt water before adding pasta, you can salt water right after putting it on heat. This can become a safe routine, but the commonly unknown result of this is that it will require a longer time to come to the boiling temperature of 100ºC. It would be better instead to wait for the boiling to start and then carefully add the salt. The addiction of salt at this stage causes a sudden increase of the temperature of the solution for a couple of seconds during which the water increases the bubbling and risks to pour out if the pan’s sides are not sufficiently high.

    So the right pan should be taller than its diameter and capacious enough to contain a good amount of water.

    The minimum ratio between water and pasta is 1lt every 100gr. Although, for small amount of pasta it’s better to use a fairly large and deep pan which will keep the water to temperature also after dropping the pasta in. So that’s why I prefer to use 5lt of water even just to cook a single portion of pasta.

    Another important detail of which to take care, is the right quantity of salt to add to the water. It depends on the quantity of salt the condiment for pasta is going to contain and the cooking time that pasta requires; not only on your personal taste.

    A normal dose of salt is 11-12gr per litre of water and it can be increased to a maximum of 14-15gr for those who like their food to be particularly savoury. When using ingredients which are already salty themselves, like bacon or ham, the dose can be lowered to a minimum of 9-10gr per litre of water, as well as when you know that you will bind pasta with a lot of its own cooking water.

    Keep also in mind that longer cooking time require smaller doses of salt whereas quicker cooking will need a larger dose.

  • 2.
    Boiling the pasta and preparing the mixing bowl

    • Salt - 35gr
    • Spaghetti -240gr
    • Extra virgin olive oil - 20gr
    • The crushed pepper - about one third

      As soon as the water starts boiling, add the salt (step 2 - pic.A).
      Let the water come to a stable boiling again and add the spaghetti. Let them settle and soften for half a minute, then stir them with a pasta server and immerse the completely. Keep stirring from time to time to prevent them sticking to each other.
      You will need to strain them when perfectly cooked al dente: it should take from 10 to 12 minutes depending on the brand of pasta (check the instructions on the packaging) (step 2 - pic.B).
      Put the 20gr of extra virgin olive oil into the large bowl and add about one third of the crushed black pepper. Set aside (step 2 - pic.C).

      Note about the correct cooking point "al dente”

      “Al dente” literally means “to the tooth”. It indicates the perfect consistency that pasta, or any other food, should have at the end of the cooking process: not too soft and not too hard at chewing. Pasta cooked “al dente” maintains a harder consistency at the centre of the dough sheet which gives the diners a pleasant feeling of “biting” rather than “mushing” something under their teeth..

  • 3.
    Straining the pasta and mixing it to the cheese, pepper and cooking liquor

    • The boiled spaghetti
    • The bowl with extra virgin olive oil and pepper
    • The grated Pecorino Romano cheese
    • The crushed black pepper
    • The cooking liquor

      When perfectly cooked al dente, strain the spaghetti directly into the mixing bowl using a pasta server. Alternatively, collect at least half a litre of cooking liquor with a jug, then drain the spaghetti with a colander, but do not let them dry completely, then put them into the mixing bowl (step 3 - pic.A).
      The mixing process must be done quickly, so keep all the ingredients handy: the cheese, the pepper and the cooking liquor. Mix the spaghetti and coat them with the extra virgin olive oil and pepper (step 3 - pic.B).
      Add about 1/3 of a ladle of cooking liquor. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.C).
      Immediately add a handful of Pecorino Romano cheese and almost a teaspoon on crushed black pepper. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.D).
      Add again about 1/4 of a ladle of cooking liquor. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.E).
      Again add a handful of Pecorino Romano cheese and black pepper. Mix quickly and thoroughly (step 3 - pic.F).
      Repeat this until the Pecorino Romano cheese and the black pepper are finished adding always less and less cooking liquor. This way you will end up with a smooth cream coating the spaghetti (step 3 - pic.G).
      Serve immediately.

Rate this recipe

"Cheese & Pepper" Spaghetti recipe - Spaghetti "Cacio e Pepe"
  • 1 People Rated This Recipe

  • Average Rating

    (5 / 5)

No comments yet.

Hi Reader, thanks for sharing your thoughts with us!

Be Social

%d bloggers like this: