Cobblestone Cooking Music XXXVIII – Spaghetti Cacio e Pepe

Just a quick usual disclaimer for whenever I do Italian cooking here – if your beloved Grandma from the sun-scorched hills in Umbria (or wherever) did this differently, this is not an attempt to cast spells on your family 😉 Hey, I ‘m just a closet South European of a Dane who likes to cook…

All the music tonight is by Gladys Knight & the Pips. Because she turned up on a Spotify playlist – and because she’s headlining this summer’s Copenhagen Jazz Festival. And because we have tickets.

  • Smile
  • Midnight Train to Georgia

And then there is a quite other reason for writing this up after some hiatus. At work today, we had a Friday bar – a short get together over a single beer or glass of wine or a sparkling water. Happens on the first Friday of the month and is a lovely “hygge” (go look it up) thing.

  • Who Is She (And What Is She To You)
  • If I Were Your Woman

I got to speak to some colleagues who were joking that they were at the party now and didn’t intend to leave. I mentioned that I had to – as I’m doing the cooking in the household and I was sure that my wife, as well as myself, would like some dinner. To which someone retorted that if I cooked, I should of course also get a blog.

Yeah! 😉

Right, Cacio e Pepe. Very, very simple dish – long, thin-ish pasta (we used a very regular spaghetti), black pepper (whole) and pecorino.

Get the pasta boiling. Take a decent amount of black peppercorn – say, a tablespoon for serving four – and give them a gentle whacking in a mortar or with the bottom of a small pot on a board. Just crack them open a wee bit.

  • I WIll Survive / Free Again
  • Bourgie’, Bourgie’

Put them on a dry pan, let them roast for a minute or two. Add a lump of butter and, when it’s done it’s initial sizzling, turn down the heat some and add a few spoonfuls of the pasta water. It’s needed in there to make the sauce and it stops everything from getting overly brown.

  • Still Such A Thing

Now, I often have issues with the cheese clumping – not Italian, recall? So today, I added a bit, let it melt, stirred it into the butter/water/pepper. Waited a bit, added som more cheese. And, at this time, some pasta water because it seemed the time to do so.

When the pasta’s not quite done yet, fish it out of the water and put it on the pan. Add cheese and pasta water (as needed, if needed) until you have that creamy consistency of a sauce surrounding the pasta.

  • Spoken Word
  • Taste of Bitter Love

Serve immediately on warm plates, sprinkling with parsley on the way. And drink a decent Italian red along with it.

No picture, sorry – wanted to serve it while hot.

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