This post is sponsored by World Market and I received gift certificates as compensation for my time. All opinions are my own.
Bring the taste of Rome home with this unbelievable recipe for Cacio e Pepe, a basic (and better!) recipe for Macaroni and Cheese!
I’ve been missing Italy. A lot. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t miss Italy? Whether you’ve been there or not!?!
My husband and I spent a lovely 10 days in Rome and Tuscany in May and I miss pretty much everything about it… from sleeping in, to sipping wine in a sidewalk cafe, to the food. Oh, the food!
It’s incredible how simple Italian food is. Few ingredients, basic preparations… best food of my life. Truly.
I’ve been trying to recreate some of my favorites, and although I’ll never quite bring back the full effect of dinning on a street in Rome with a meal from my own kitchen, I came kinda close when I made a traditional Roman dish with some World Market finds.
Cacio e Pepe, a dish which literally translates to “cheese and pepper” is just that… and with Bella Italia pasta (the best pasta I’ve had state-side), and just four other ingredients, this might just become your favorite Italian dish as well! Bella Italia makes beautiful pastas and sauces, but for my Cacio e Pepe recipe, I chose a Cicatelli pasta… homemade pasta made from a mixture of durum wheat, semolina and water with an elongated shaped and hollow inside. Just perfect for getting the cheese and spices into the little groves for each and every bite!
Dying for the recipe? Without further ado…
Cacio e Pepe starts with preparing the Bella Italia pasta according to package directions, but drain at least two minutes before al dente, reserving some of the cooking liquid.
Meanwhile, melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add a generous amount of freshly ground pepper. Cook, swirling pan, until aromatic, about 1 minute.
Add reserved pasta water to skillet along with pasta and olive oil. Reduce heat to low and add Parmesan cheese, stirring and tossing with tongs until melted.
Remove pan from heat, transfer pasta to warm bowls and serve. Serve with basil chiffonade, if desired (and a delicious glass of an Italian red, also available at World Market)!
- Kosher salt
- 16 oz. Bella Italia pasta
- 1 stick of butter, cubed
- 2 tablespoons Betlla Italia Olive Oil
- 2 tsp. freshly cracked World Market black pepper
- 1 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- Bring water to a boil. Season with salt; add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until about 2 minutes before tender. Drain, reserving 1 1/4 cup pasta cooking water.
- Meanwhile, melt butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add pepper. Cook, swirling pan, until toasted, about 1 minute.
- Add reserved pasta water to skillet and bring to a simmer. Add pasta and olive oil. Reduce heat to low and add cheese, stirring and tossing with tongs until melted. Remove pan from heat, transfer pasta to warm bowls and serve. Top with basil chiffonade, if desired.
Getting inspired to cook up something with an Italian flair? Don’s miss some great recipes from some of my fellow blogging pals:
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