The OG pasta dish cacio e pepe combines noodles with a no-fuss sauce of pasta water, cheese and loads of freshly ground black pepper. Chefs Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo of Jon & Vinny's in L.A. choose thick bucatini noodles to catch the cheesy sauce. The simple dish is bound to be a hit at any dinner party.
Though the dish is relatively uncomplicated to make, cooking the pasta is key. You want the noodles to be just al dente but still firm. This way, when you toss in the cooking liquid and cheese, the pasta doesn't overcook.
To learn more, read "Cacio of the Day."
Bucatini Cacio e Pepe
Recipe adapted from Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, Jon & Vinny's, Los Angeles, CA
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
1 pound dried bucatini pasta
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for garnish
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus more for garnish
Kosher salt, to taste
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the bucatini and cook until just al dente, 8 to 9 minutes. Drain, reserving 1¼ cup of pasta water.
2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, toast the ground pepper over medium heat until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add 4 tablespoons of the butter and the olive oil, and cook until the butter has melted, 1 to 2 minutes.
3. Add the drained pasta, 1 cup of the reserved pasta water, the grated Parmesan and Pecorino Romano. Toss to coat the pasta well and season with salt. Add the remaining ¼ cup of reserved pasta water and tablespoon of butter, tossing to incorporate. Transfer to a platter and garnish with ground pepper and Pecorino Romano cheese. Then serve.