cacio e pepe
This fancy looking pasta is just lemon pepper pasta with a cream-less creamy sauce. You have all the ingredients in your home, unless you don’t. This sauce is literally made from the pasta water—perfect for when you can’t go to the grocery store to pick up ingredients because there’s a pandemic that your country didn’t properly prepare for, you know?
Ingredients: serves 2
-pasta (any kind works, I used 1/2 a box of rigatoni)
-lemon zest (use the tiniest part of the cheese grater and grate the lemon rind, rotating the lemon every 5-6 grates until the whole outer part of the lemon is white)
-pepper (just enough for you to see pepper flecks in the pasta, about 1 tablespoon)
-1/3 cup Parmesan, grated (fresh grated is preferred) -3 tablespoons butter
Boil a pot of water. Add a fistful of salt. Once the water is boiling, add the pasta and reduce the heat to medium. The starches released by the pasta can cause the water to boil over. Follow box directions for al dente pasta. Once the pasta is done, remove 1 cup (8 oz) pasta water before draining.
In a pan, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Once it’s fully melted, add 1/4 cup of the pasta water. Stir, then add the pasta.
Gently stir pasta and add the remaining pasta water and the tablespoon of butter. Alternate between butter and pasta water, adding 1/4 cup of pasta water at a time. In between additions, let the pasta & sauce bubble for a couple minutes. This is called *reducing*, where the amount of liquid *reduces*. Once you’ve added the last of the water & butter, stir gently and continue to let the sauce reduce until it starts to get creamy. This will take 5-10 minutes and it’ll look weird and gross and you’ll probably panic a little until suddenly it looks like real food! Just keep stirring gently over medium heat and try not to worry that you’ve fucked it all up. Once you get to this ~saucy~ consistency, add the pepper & lemon zest, stir & serve!