Thursday, December 14, 2006
The Spice is Right is one of my favourite food blogging events to follow, and I am really glad to finally join in for the Warm me up baby! It's cold outside... episode, hosted this time around at Rosie's Kitchen. What warmer spice exists than pepper? And Pepper is my handle. So, perfect. What to make? I had picked up some grated Pecorino Romano at the Italian Centre for a really, really good price, so the natural choice was spaghetti cacio e pepe, a recipe that was very in vogue a year or so ago. It is spaghetti with Pecorino Romano cheese and freshly grated pepper.
Bring a large pan of water to boil, salt it, and add spaghetti (whole wheat spaghetti is shown) for however many people you are serving. Mix together grated Pecorino Romano and pepper - about 2 tbs cheese and 3 grinds of pepper for one person and an additional tbs of cheese and grind of pepper for each additional person. This dish is easily wrecked with too much cheese (the salty element) or pepper, so add less to start. When spaghetti is nearly soft, drain, saving some pasta water, and mix the hot spaghetti with the cheese and pepper, adding water to soften the cheese into a sauce. Taste for flavour balance, adding more cheese or pepper if needed, and serve immediately.
Bloggers seem to love this dish, and I can understand why - the pepper and cheese are magic together. The very talented Orchidea has a gorgeous version, and Orangette also did a great post on it last year.