You have often read what I have written about my family in Montefollonico. It is a quaint little hamlet in Siena and that is where my Father was born. We always visit them when we travel there for business for our Italian Market in Dunwoody, GA (E. 48th Street Market). On this visit my cousin’s son, Lorenzo, who is now a well established young doctor, treated us to Cacio e Pepe.
1 LB SPAGHETTI
4 TBS EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
2 TSPS BLACK PEPPER – freshly cracked
¾ CUP CACIO de ROMANO CHEESE – freshly grated*
1 CUP AGED PECORINO ROMANO – freshly grated
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt, let boil for a few seconds and then add the pasta and cook until al dente.
While the pasta is cooking, heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the cracked pepper and cook until fragrant, 1-3 minutes.
Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of pasta water. Add ¾ cup of pasta water into the skillet with the oil and bring it to a boil.
Using tongs, transfer pasta to the skillet. Sprinkle ¾ cup of each of the cheeses over the pasta. Toss the pasta with the cheese and oil mixture well, adding additional water, if necessary, a little at a time. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and toss again.
Transfer to individual plates or bowls, pass additional cheese and black pepper.
NOTE: If Cacio de Romano is not available you can just use 1 ¾ cups of Pecorino Romano.