Cooking Class: Cacio e Pepe, a Roman Classic with Gina Tringali

Cooking Class: Cacio e Pepe, a Roman Classic with Gina Tringali


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Cacio e pepe (cheese and pepper) pasta, a classic Roman pasta dish is popping up on menus far beyond the eternal city. Despite gaining fame in the 20th century, some argue that the roots of this dish are in ancient Roman cuisine as pecorino romano cheese was the cheese that nourished the Roman legions.

Today, cacio e pepe is on the menu. Although found in every Roman trattoria and in Roman homes, no cacio e pepe is alike. From creamy and luscious to dense and dry, pecorino romano cheese, black pepper, and pasta are the main recipe ingredients. Deceivingly simple, the secret to the success of this dish is in the creation of the perfect ‘cremina’. In this cooking seminar, we will learn one version of this dish and talk about the cacio e pepe trends happening in Italy.

In this hands-on conversation, we will learn how to prepare this iconic Roman pasta dish. Led by food historian, sommelier, and home cook Gina Tringali, this interactive lesson will have you making cacio e pepe like a nonna. Designed to deliver a taste of Rome, participants will come away with an understanding of how to make this beloved pasta and learn about its different cooking methods, pasta shapes, and flavors.

We're not giving away our secret recipe* just yet, but here are the items that you will need for the cooking class:

  • Spaghetti or tonnarelli pasta, dried
  • Black peppercorns
  • Pecorino Romano, finely grated
  • Salt
  • Water
  • Small non-stick skillet
  • Mortar & pestle
  • Paper towels
  • Large pot for boiling pasta
  • Large bowl or large stainless steel or aluminum saucepan
  • Ladle
  • Medium/large wooden spoon
  • Large carving fork or tines to remove pasta when cooked, or a colander/strainer

*Participants will be provided with a formal recipe, including measurements, prior to the class.

Gina is a food historian, coffee connoisseur, and cook. Born into an Italian-American family, Gina spent countless hours in the kitchens of her mom and her Neapolitan and Sicilian grandmothers – watching, cooking, tasting – dreaming of living in Italy. In 2007 she relocated to Rome where she earned a Master’s degree in Italian Gastronomic Culture from the Università degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata”, and became a certified sommelier and member of AIS. She also holds an MBA from NYU. Before relocating to Rome, she worked for Tom Colicchio's Craft family of restaurants in NYC in business development and marketing and she spent some time in the kitchen. Her writing appears on numerous food and travel publications.

This conversation is suitable for all ages

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.