There are few dishes simpler to put together than this one, and almost none which would be as satisfying – regardless of how hungry a diner might be.
Last night I didn’t have a thin pasta like bavette, a linguine fini, or even a penne, each of which I believe I have sometimes used over the years, so I cut open a one-kilo package of bigoli instead and weighted out 8 ounces. I thought I had violated a tradition in using these thick long tubes, but when I went on line later to check on what the classic cacio e pepe was, I came across a number of sites describing bigoli as the pasta of choice.
There also seems to be some disagreement about the cheese of choice: Most recipes indicate pecorino, some pecorino Romano and Parmigiano-Reggiano, and I’ve also seen ‘Cacio di Roma’ paired with pecorino Romano.
I’ve generally gone with pecorino Romano and Parmigiano-Reggiano myself, because that’s where my experience with this dish started, 15 years ago, and also because I have a soft spot for Amanda Hesser and her food writing.
These are the ingredients I used this time:
- eight ounces of Setaro Bucatini from Buon Italia; Baleine coarse sea salt; almost a quarter cup each of pecorino Romano from Whole Foods and Parmigiano Reggiano Vacche Rosse from Buon Italia; 2 tablespoons of Kerrygold Pure Irish Butter; 2 tablespoons of Greek olive oil from Trader Joe’s; one full tablespoon of black pepper, coarsely ground as usual [in my ancient wooden mortar and pestle]
- the wine was an Italian (Marche) white, Saladini Pilastri Falerio 2015, from Phillippe Wines
- the music was Rameau’s one-act acte-de-ballet, the 1754 ‘Anacreon’, Jonathan Williams conducting the Orchestra Of The Age Of Enlightenment and the Choir Of The Enlightenment