Tonnarelli alla gricia is a first course of pasta, which is made with a few essential ingredients, pork cheek, pecorino romano and black peppercorns. This recipe, as well as spaghetti cacio e pepe, carbonara and amatriciana is an historic dish of the Lazio culinary tradition, symbol of healthful eating using Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) ingredients.
Ingredienti per i tonnarelli alla gricia (4 persone)
- 0.9 pounds of tonnarelli pasta;
- 0.25 pounds of finely grated Pecorino Romano (about 6 ounces), plus more for serving:
- 0.35 pounds of Amatrice pork jowl;
- Salt and black peppercorns to taste;
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|Nutritional values for one serving|
|Saturated fats||0 gr.|
|Monounsaturated fats||0 gr.|
|Polyunsaturated fats||0 gr.|
|of which sugars||0 gr.|
|Dietary fiber||0 gr.|
How to prepare tonnarelli alla gricia
Tonnarelli is a kind of spaghetti “alla chitarra”, a variety of egg pasta typical of Italian and Abruzzo cuisine.
Let’s grate the pecorino romano cheese, a characteristic of this cheese is its medium seasoning, which is essential for a good creaminess, when mixed together with the tonnarelli in the pan.
Remove the pork jowl rind and cut it into slices and then cut again into thin strips.
Put in a pan already hot and sauté the pork jowl strips for a few minutes,do not add any other fat, just use the pork jowl. Then chop a sprinkling of pepper on top.
Let it sizzle over medium heat in the pan, until the strips are crunchy and the fat has been released into the pan.
Now we can remove the pork jowl strips from the pan to temporarily keep it aside on a plate.
Boil the water in a saucepan, this will allow the cooking water to have a greater concentration of starch which will be essential for the re-cooking phase in the pan. Do not salt the cooking water as the pecorino romano and the bacon will give the necessary flavor. Adding more salt to the recipe could alter the balance of flavors.
When the water is boiling, pour the tonnarelli and let them cook for half the cooking time indicated on the package.
Once the cooking time of the tonnarelli has been reached, drain directly into the pan with the pork jowl fat. Let’s finish the tonnarelli cooking time. If necessary add a little pasta water with a ladle and mix regularly so as to oxygenate the pasta.
Now we can add the crispy pork jowl stripes in the pan.
Let’s grate half of the pecorino romano cheese in a bowl together with a sprinkling of chopped pepper.
Pour a ladle of pasta cooking water, which we have kept in the pot. Mix with a whisk, adding the remaining amount of pecorino romano cheese a little at a time.
Once the tonnarelli are cooked, remove the pan from the stove and pour the pecorino romano cheese cream. Let’s mix all together using kitchen tongs.
Another sprinkle of grated pecorino romano cheese and chopped pepper.
We can serve our tonnarelli alla gricia, and enjoy them immediately with the creaminess of the pecorino and the crunchiness of the pork jowl stripes.