CACIO E PEPE

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Cheese and pepper. Two of my favorite things. Add some pasta and you have really won my heart. My husband, Andre, was the first person to ever make this dish for me and immediately I was hooked. Although it is quite simple in concept,  Cacio e Pepe has to be done just right. A high quality Pecorino Romano, lots of black pepper, and perfectly al dente pasta. Finish it with a few tablespoons of salty, starchy pasta water. Sit down and enjoy!

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CACIO E PEPE

Serves 4

1 lb spaghetti

pecorino romano

black pepper

pasta water

extra virgin olive oil

sea salt

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Fill a large stock pot with water. Bring to a boil. Add a generous amount of sea salt to the water. Add the pasta and gently stir to coat in the water, so it does not stick together.

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While you are waiting for the pasta to cook, gather your other ingredients. Grab four bowls, a fine cheese grater for the pecorino, and a tablespoon for the pasta water.

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In the bottom of each bowl, pour a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil. Swirl the olive oil around the bottom of each bowl to coat.

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Once your pasta is al dente, scoop if directly out of the pasta water and divide it into the four bowls. With the cheese grater, grate a generous amount of pecorino romano over each bowl.

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Add a generous amount of black pepper over the top of each bowl. Add a tablespoon of pasta water. With a fork, gently mix the cheese and pepper around the pasta, coating the strands in the cheesy sauce that has formed. Again, add a generous amount of cheese and pepper to each bowl. If the pasta is sticky, add more pasta water and give it a little stir. Serve immediately!

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Recipe by Andre Vippolis

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