Cacio e pepe literally means “cheese and pepper,” and honestly, you could forgo all of the extra ingredients I included and still have a delicious dish. From The Kitchy Kitchen.
For 4 servings
4 cups diced, peeled butternut squash
1 yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
10 to 12 ounces dried orecchiette
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups torn or chopped kale (1-inch pieces)
3/4 cup grated pecorino romano cheese,
plus additional for serving
3 ounces burrata, roughly chopped
1. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Put the butternut squash and onion on a rimmed baking sheet and toss with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and 2 teaspoons salt. Roast until tender and lightly browned, about 30 minutes, stirring once halfway through.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add 1 to 2 tablespoons salt and the orecchiette; cook al dente.
3. While the pasta is cooking, place a large sauté pan over medium heat; when the pan is hot, add the pepper and toast until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the butter, the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, and the kale. Stir together until the butter melts, then remove from the heat.
4. Drain the pasta, reserving 3/4 cup of the cooking water. Put the sauté pan over medium heat again. Add the pasta to the pan along with the roasted butternut squash and onion and the pecorino; toss it all together. Add some of the reserved water, a few tablespoons at a time, until the cheese melts into a creamy sauce; you might not use it all.
5. Remove from the heat and stir in the burrata. Serve with additional pecorino cheese on the side.