It’s safe to say that I’m constantly craving carbs. And cheese.
Sometimes, I yearn for gooey, spicy enchiladas. Other times I need the crunch of crispy sourdough and the heat from broiled cheddar. I’ll never say no to this classic, especially when I need to bribe Rho to eat something.
Such a craving may do wonders for my soul, but it’s also given me a slight muffin top in the past month. And while I’m unwilling to give up the cheese, I’ve swapped out the pasta for spaghetti squash to whip up one of my perennial favorites.
Cacio e pepe.
I tend to judge an Italian restaurant by its version. Antica Pesa in Brooklyn (and, well, Rome) is the most authentic I’ve had. Gelso & Grand‘s cacio e pepe, drizzled with their homemade chili oil, is another go-to.
But this version is the one I probably eat the most, given that all the ingredients – spaghetti squash, pecorino romano, lemons – are staples on our weekly grocery list.
Try it. I think you’ll love it.
- 1 spaghetti sqash
- 2 tablespoons of butter
- 1/2 cup of freshly grated pecorino romano
- 1 lemon
- Red chili flakes
- Preheat oven to 425°F.
- Pierce the outside of the spaghetti squash with a sharp chef’s knife. Place in a baking tray and put inside the hot oven and bake for 35-45 minutes (or until skin can be pierced easily with a fork)
- While the spaghetti squash bakes, grate the cheese, zest and juice the lemon and set all ingredients aside.
- Once spaghetti squash is cooked and cooled, slice it in half and scoop out the seeds. Using a fork, scrape the flesh of the squash and place it in a bowl.
- In a large skillet, melt the butter and cook the squash. Once fully cooked (it should lose its chewy texture), add the cheese, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and pepper flakes. Stir and continue to add spices as you taste.
- Remove spaghetti squash from heat and stir in the lemon juice. Garnish with more cheese and pepper flakes, and enjoy!