One of my favorite things about my reunions with Ryan is our shared love for food adventures! Our recent weekend together in New York was stacked with amazing restaurant stops, including a mouth-watering lunch at Eataly (a mecca for all foods Italian, nestled in the Flatiron District). Eataly is divided into themed sections, and naturally being the carbaholics we are, we ate at “La Pizza & La Pasta”. After dreaming for weeks (…literally weeks) about the decadent, simple, and delicious cacio e pepe (meaning cheese and pepper) pasta we had there, I decided to give it a go in my own kitchen.
½ pound of long pasta like spaghetti | ¼ cup of quality olive oil (or 2 tbsp of unsalted butter) | 1-2 tbsp unsalted butter | 1 tsp ground black pepper | 1/3 cup grated parmigiano reggiano | 1/2 cup grated pecorino romano | 1/3 cup grated grana padano
❶ Bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta, add a pinch of sea salt. Once boiling, add in your pasta *NOTE: if you are making this with gluten-free pasta, make sure to put more water in the pot than you would for regular wheat pasta. Gluten-free pasta tends to thicken the water as it cooks, and since we are using the pasta water to thin out the sauce later, you will want to overcompensate and make sure your gluten-free pasta water has a similar consistency as you would have with regular pasta water. ❷ While that is cooking, put a saucepan on medium heat. Add your olive oil and black pepper to the pan. ❸ Once warmed through (2-3 minutes) add the butter. I like using a mix of olive oil and butter, both for health reasons (less saturated fat) and for achieving a greater flavor complexity, while still getting that creamy-ness from the butter. If you want to use all butter though you definitely can, and it will definitely be delish too! ❹ Once the butter and oil are melted and incorporated turn off the heat. ❺ Cook the pasta until slightly under al-dente. Once done, drain the pasta but reserve a cup of pasta water. ❻ Put your sauce pan back on low heat. ❼ Add roughly half a cup of the water to the sauce pan, as well as the drained pasta. ❽ Gently fold in most of the grated cheese, reserve a small amount for finishing when plating the pasta. ❾ If the sauce is too thick, add in a little more pasta water until it reaches your desired consistency. ❿ Serve on warm plates. Not necessary but keeps the pasta all the more melty and delicious! 🙂
Enjoy! And don’t forget to follow along on instagram @lapetite.italienne for more of my daily foodie adventures.
until next time! -gabby