Wednesday, June 29, 2011
Bavette Cacio e Pepe
When it comes to pasta (one of my favorite things in the world), it is oftentimes best to buy the absolute best pasta you can get your hands on, and then let it's wonderful qualities shine through, as opposed to smothering it in a heavy, complicated sauce. That is exactly what this bavette does. The long, thin noodles are simply coated in two different types of cheeses, good butter, freshly cracked pepper, and a fantastic olive oil. It's creamy and peppery and earthy all at the same time. It's a beautiful dish.
If you're in New York and happen to find yourself strolling through SoHo hungry, make it a point to seek out Lupa, a Roman trattoria owned by Mario Batali, and the inspiration behind this recipe. They have a bavette on their menu that is pretty much my idea of perfection. Complete with a glass of your favorite wine, and life just doesn't get much better than that. The below recipe serves two. xo
Bavette Cacio e Pepe
From Cooking for Mr. Latte, by Amanda Hesser
1/4 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1/4 cup finely grated pecorino Romano cheese
1/2 pound DeCecco linguini
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon very coarse, freshly ground black pepper
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Sprinkle in enough sea salt so that it tastes seasoned. Meanwhile, mix the cheeses together in a small bowl. When the water boils, add the linguini and cook it for about 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. Near the end of cooking, scoop out about 1/2 cup of cooking water and reserve.
Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Drop in the butter, oil and 1/2 tablespoon pepper and stir with tongs or a large fork, lifting and folding the pasta together. Add about 1/4 cup of the pasta water to the pot and place it over medium-high heat. Cook for a minute, stirring to emulsify the sauce. Test a noodle to see if it's done. It should still be a bit firm in the center, though not as stiff as licorice.
Remove from the heat and sprinkle half the cheese over the pasta. Blend once more, then divide the pasta among four warm bowls. Pass the rest of the cheese and pepper at the table.