Lemon Myrtle Cacio e pepe picci pasta - Katrina Meynink

Friends. Gather in.  While we thought cacio e pepe couldn’t get any better, Katrina added just a touch of lemon myrtle. Oh my lordy, it makes the mouth-feel of this heavenly dish even creamier – complementing the bite of the pepper to absolute perfection. Manna from heaven!

Make it now. And remember, a light touch with the lemon myrtle and it is the perfect partner in crime.

Get it in your belly!

Ingredients   Method

 

Pici

300g soft wheat, 00 pasta flour

½ tsp 1mm lemon myrtle

140ml warm water

10ml (about 1 tbsp) olive o

 

 

Cacio e pepe sauce

320g pecorino romano, very finely grated, plus extra to serve

120g parmigiano reggiano, very finely grated, plus extra to serve

2 tsp freshly ground black pepper, plus extra to serve

1 small drop lemon myrtle oil

Freshly cracked black pepper

Method

  1. For the pici, add the soft wheat flour to a large bowl. Make a well in the centre.
  2. Combine the warm water, olive oil and lemon myrtle in a separate bowl and stir briefly to combine.
  3. Add the flour to a large mixing bowl and make a well in the centre.
  4. Separately, combine the water, olive oil and lemon myrtle and set aside for the flavours to infuse, about fifteen minutes. Add the water mixture to the well and with a fork gradually incorporate the flour from the rim of the well into the centre, continuing to fold and combine until a shaggy dough forms. Knead vigorously for about 15 minutes or until everything is well-combined, smooth and firm. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic and let it rest for 30 minutes to an hour at room temperature (the longer rest time will make it easier to roll the pici).
  5. Cut the dough into thirds and working one at a time, flatten with the palm of your hand. Then roll with a rolling pin until about 2mm thick. Brush the dough with a very light coat of olive oil to prevent it from drying out. Cut the slab into 2mm strips then using both hands, roll along the bench to make your pici – starting from the centre. Cover rolled strands with a dish cloth and continue making the pici until all the dough has been used.
  6. Place a large pot with 1½ litres of water over high heat, bring to the boil and salt lightly, add the pasta, stir well and cook for one minute. The pici should just come to the surface. Before draining, scoop one cup of the cooking liquid off the top and reserve. Strain the pasta.
  7. Place a large frying pan over medium heat. Add 1 tbsp olive oil and once hot, add a sprinkle of black pepper and the single drop of lemon myrtle oil. Given how strong the lemon myrtle oil is, it is very important to proceed with caution here, one tiny drop is all you need for the beautiful fragrant flavour of the lemon myrtle. Immediately add the reserved cup of cooking water and stir to combine then add the pasta. Add half the cheese, stirring gently to coat and melt, swirling the pici around the pan fairly constantly. Add the remaining cheese and swirl again until just melted. Turn out into plates and sprinkle over additional black pepper and serve piping hot.

 

Looking to try Lemon Myrtle? Request a sample.