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A simple classic pasta, suddenly very much on trend: Cacio e Pepe

With only four ingredients – spaghetti, Pecorino Romano, salt and black pepper – this rustic Roman favorite is enjoying a moment.

Blue Kitchen
Spaghetti with pecorino romano and pepper can be served with a simple salad as your main course, or serve it in smaller portions as a side dish.

I rarely find myself ahead of the curve on anything. When I first shared my version of cacio e pepe – a popular favorite in Roman trattorias – five years ago today, it was adapted from a cookbook published back in 2002. So imagine my surprise when the humble four-ingredient pasta started lighting up the Internet a couple of months ago.

There's a reason this rustic dish is so popular. It is seriously delicious. Uncomplicated comfort food with a nice peppery kick. And you can literally prepare the whole dish it in the time it takes to cook the pasta. You’ll find my recipe here.

Meanwhile, as I said, cacio e pepe is suddenly everywhere. In January, New York magazine’s Grub Street named the 11(!) best places to get it in NYC. In February, Tasting Table shared a recipe from Jon & Vinny’s in L.A. And this month alone, PureWow called it the one pasta recipe you need to know; David Chang delivered three versions of the classic dish in the Lucky Peach newsletter; and perhaps most interesting of all, Bon Appétit substituted baby potatoes for the pasta, opening up whole new worlds (sautéed green beans, anyone?).

So pick up some Pecorino, break out the pepper mill and try one of these recipes. And when you do, thank me for being so prescient.

Related post on Blue Kitchen: So simple, Thoreau would have liked it: Spaghetti with Pecorino Romano and Pepper

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