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pasta with pecorino and pepper

I caught an episode of a show with Lidia Bastianich last weekend, and she made a delicious-looking pasta with pecorino cheese and crushed pepper. I've searched her website but can't find it. I can probably fake my way through it, but if anyone can help with a recipe I'd be most appreciative. Thanks!

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  1. Its called cacio e pepe. I'm sure you can find some recipes online but essentially it s just pecorino romano, very coarsely crushed black pepper and some of the pasta cooking water to make a sauce. Instead of using a pepper mill, Lidia crushed the pepper by using her pan to keep it very very coarse.

    1. It's from her new cookbook "Lidia's Italy" I don't believe they give those recipes out for free :)

      1 Reply
      1. If you look on the LATimes food page, they had this recipe a couple weeks ago.


        I hope the link works. I made the recipe a couple weeks ago. It is really good. I just used my pepper grinder rather than pound the pepper and thought it was fantastic.

        1 Reply
        1. re: sam21479

          This was my grandmother's favorite way to eat spaghetti. She added a few tablespoons of butter for good measure, though. My contribution to the recipe is a few sprinkles of red pepper flakes.

        2. This truly is one of my favorite foods in the world. I could eat it every night. As mentioned, just boil some spaghetti (I like fresh with this, though dried works fine) and toss it with lots of cracked black pepper, grated pecorino (get a good one) and some pasta water, or a little oil. There simply is nothing better. If you ever happen to be in NYC, LUPA, a small, relatively inexpensive italian place owned by Mario Batali serves hands down the best version you will ever eat.

          1. Try Pecorino Pepato sometime. It's Pecorino cheese (sheep's milk) with whole peppercorns. The truly imported ones are fantastic! The domestic versions don't compare. Grated or sliced as a table cheese or accompaniment are both good eating. (See image in this reply).

            1. Try some chopped, sauteed pancetta along with the pecorino, pepper, and pasta water. Killer good. Maybe 2 - 3 ounces for a pound of tubular pasta (something to grab onto those pancetta bits). And I'll sometimes throw in a handful or two of green peas.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Old Spice

                Agreed. I add pancetta at times and while I love the 'purist' version, with pancetta it is terrific. (But then again, what isn't good with a little pancetta added?)

                1. re: Old Spice

                  I went to a restaurant in Rome that served a variation of this. They laid 2 nice slices of prosciutto in a cross on the plate, mounded the cacio e pepe in the middle, and then folded the strips of proscuitto over the top of the pasta. It made a nice little package and the proscuitto kind of melted. It was a great presentation.

                2. Epicurious also has a good recipe for this that I make all of the time: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/rec...

                  I also love this dish!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Cuoca

                    mario batali has it in his cookbook... delicious

                  2. On the basis of the replies above, and knowing that I had some tagliatelle, pecorino, and pancetta in the fridge sreaming my name, I made a breakfast version.

                    Leftover tagliatelle
                    fresh arugula from the garden
                    two hard boiled eggs, sliced
                    a bit of olive oil
                    cracked green and black peppercorns

                    all basically tossed together quickly - a very memorable breakfast. Thanks everyone!

                    1. I just saw this on PBS this morning. You cook the pasta and place it a large skillet
                      with some of the cooking water.. you slowly mix in and add the grated pecorino cheese.
                      keep swirling the past as you add the cheese and add more water so you end up making a sauce. Near the end, you then add in the cracked black pepper. Lidia says to coat the pasta (obviously pepper is to taste).. To make the cracked pepper she takes the black peppercorns and crushes them with another skillet by dragging and pressing the skillet on the pepper to get the corse pepper