Chefs' Recipes

Enrico Tomelleri’s pici with cacio e pepe and shiitake

A recipe for perfect hand-rolled pici with a cacio e pepe and mushroom sauce.
Alicia Taylor
4 - 6
1H 15M

“Pici is Enrico’s favourite pasta shape and cacio e pepe his favourite sauce. So even if it’s not traditional to combine them, here we go,” says Paski Vineria Popolare co-owner Giorgio De Maria.

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1.For pici dough, combine flour and ¼ tsp fine salt in a large bowl; make a well in the centre, then add combined oil and 150ml warm water. Using your hands, mix to form a shaggy dough. Transfer to a lightly floured work bench and knead until smooth and soft (10 minutes); wrap dough in plastic wrap, then rest at room temperature (1 hour).
2.To roll pici, place dough on a dry work bench without dusting it with flour or it will be hard to shape. Using a rolling pin, roll dough to 5mm thick and cut into rectangles around 20cm wide. Cut each rectangle into thin strips around 1cm wide and roll with hands to form long thin noodles about 4mm thick (keep remaining dough covered while you roll). Place pici on a tray dusted with semolina to stop it sticking together. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside until ready to cook.
3.For mushroom stock, fill a saucepan with 1 litre salted water and bring to the boil over high heat. Add 40gm dried shiitake mushrooms and 5gm dried porcini mushrooms. Turn off heat, cover and leave to infuse for at least 20 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve and return mushroom stock to pan. Discard solids. Return to the boil, cover and keep hot until required. Place remaining dried mushrooms in a spice grinder or high-speed blender and grind to a fine powder; set aside.
4.Preheat oven to 200˚C. Meanwhile, place fresh shiitake mushrooms on an oven tray and drizzle with oil. Season to taste and roast until light golden (8-10 minutes). Keep warm and set aside.
5.Toast pepper in a large, deep heavy-based frying pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until fragrant (1-2 minutes). Add mushroom stock and simmer until reduced by three-quarters (15 minutes).
6.Meanwhile, bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. Cook pici until al dente (2 minutes). Drain, reserving pasta water. Keep water warm. Add pici to reduced peppered mushroom stock with 250ml reserved pasta water. Cook, stirring occasionally, until pici is cooked and water is partially absorbed (3-4 minutes); turn off heat.
7.For pecorino cream, working quickly, place half the pecorino in a heatproof bowl. Add 125ml reserved pasta water and whisk until combined. Add remaining pecorino while whisking until mixture is smooth and combined (1-2 minutes). Add pecorino cream and roasted mushrooms to pici; season and toss to combine.
8.Divide pici among plates, scatter with grated pecorino, dust with mushroom powder and drizzle with extra olive oil.

Wine suggestion: 2018 Daniele Piccinin Montemagro, Veneto.


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