Don’t let the simplicity of cacio e pepe fool you. It may only require three ingredients, but this pasta dish has become a darling on menus and in media for being simple yet fulfilling.
Long, skinny pasta such as bucatini, tagliolini or spaghetti is boiled and then quickly tossed with a little reserved cooking water, black pepper and a grana-style cheese — such as pecorino Romano, Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano — until everything comes together. And that’s it.
It’s a simple, comforting dish with growing appeal on American menus.
Market research firm Datassential reports that cacio e pepe is slowly but surely becoming more popular. Found on just 1% of menus in American restaurants, the instances have jumped 140% in four years. Not surprisingly, it is most commonly found at casual-dining independent restaurants and progressive fast casuals.
Learn more about this simple but satisfying Flavor of the Week by clicking through the slideshow.