Cacio E Pepe Shells

Cacio E Pepe Shells

Cacio e Pepe means literally Cheese and Pepper. It is the simplest of pasta dishes traditionally made with spaghetti or another long thin pasta with Pecorino Romana, an aged sheep’s cheese and coarsely ground pepper. When done correctly it is out of this world. Vero mixes it up with shells and folds broccolini in with the pasta for color and taste.


  • Fresh shells
  • Broccolini
  • Butter
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Grated pecorino (for sauce)
  • Grated pecorino (for garnish)
  • Black pepper
  • Cream


  • 6 qt. Pot
  • 2 Large sauté pans
  • Chef’s knife
  • Large metal cooking spoon or large metal spatula
  • Pasta strainer or basket
  • Metal tongs or cooking spoon



STEP 1: Fill 6 qt. pot 2/3 of the way with water.

STEP 2: Heat water over high heat, bring to a rolling boil. (Save a little pasta water after you are done cooking pasta, you may need it for the sauce.)

STEP 3: Add 2 T Kosher salt to boiling water. Water should be salty like the sea.

STEP 4: Trim broccolini stems with chef’s knife. (Take off 1-2 inches.)

STEP 9: “Fluff pasta” Loosen up noodles with fingers before cooking.



STEP 1: Heat 2oz. olive oil in large sauté pan over medium-high heat.

STEP 2: Once oil is simmering add broccolini, sauté stirring occasionally until slightly colored and softened. (2-3 minutes.) Reduce heat to medium.

STEP 3: Add cream and bring to simmer. Simmer cream until reduced by half. (2-4 minutes)

STEP 4: Add 1 teaspoon of black pepper, butter and grated parmesan. Stir with tongs or spatula vigorously to make sure all ingredients are properly incorporated.

STEP 5: Add pasta to boiling water and give it a quick stir to prevent the noodles from sticking.

STEP 6: Cook pasta 2-3 minutes or until desired al dente.

STEP 7: Strain pasta and add noodles to the sauce.

STEP 8: Toss or stir until all noodles are coated with sauce.

STEP 9: If pasta appears to be dry or it needs more sauce you may add a few tablespoons of pasta water.

STEP 10: Add salt and pepper to taste.

STEP 11: Transfer to pasta dish and garnish with grated parmesan.

STEP 12: Enjoy your pasta!


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