|Course||Primo (Italian pasta course); main course|
|Place of origin||Italy|
|Region or state||Lazio|
|Main ingredients||Pasta, pecorino romano, black pepper|
Cacio e pepe (Italian pronunciation: [ˈkaːtʃo e pˈpeːpe]) is a pasta dish from the cuisine of the city of Rome. Cacio e pepe means "cheese and pepper" in several central Italian dialects. In keeping with its name, the dish contains grated pecorino romano cheese and black pepper, together with spaghetti, or traditionally tonnarelli. All the ingredients keep well for a long time, which made the dish practical for shepherds without fixed abode. Rough-surfaced pasta is recommended, to make the sauce adhere well.
The pasta is prepared in boiling salted water as usual; it is then poured into the grated pecorino mixed with black pepper, with a little of the hot, starchy, cooking water. The heat melts the cheese, and the starches in the water help bind the pepper and cheese to the pasta.
While not traditional to cacio e pepe, seafood or bacon may be added, and other shapes of pasta such as rigatoni, always made with a rough surface, may be used. Pecorino romano cheese is also sometimes substituted with Parmesan cheese.
- Boni (1930), p. 46
- "Pasta cacio e pepe". Archived from the original on 24 March 2018. Retrieved 3 May 2018.
- "Spaghetti Cacio e Pepe Ricetta Originale Romana" [Spaghetti cacio e pepe – the original Roman recipe]. The Foodellers (in Italian). Retrieved 17 October 2019. There is an English translation, but it lacks important tips on getting this deceptively simple dish right. Google Translate works well.