June 18, 2024


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Pasta alla Gricia Recipe (Pasta with Guanciale, Pecorino, and Black Pepper)

4 min read
Rigatoni Alla Gricia Recipe

Welcome to Parla’s Pastas, a bi-weekly column by the Rome-primarily based, New York Instances best-marketing cookbook author Katie Parla. Listed here you will obtain classic and motivated recipes from Italy’s 20 areas. Get ready for a carb-pushed journey through the trattorias of Rome, the kitchens of Sicily (her ancestral homeland), rural Campania, and outside of. Hearth up a pot of water, and andiamo!

Gricia should be a home title. The pillar of Roman cuisine hits the significant notes of Central Italian food items with its sauce of pleasingly pungent Pecorino Romano, fat-abundant guanciale, and coarsely ground black pepper. Like amatriciana and carbonara, Rome’s superior-recognised pastas, gricia achieves daring flavor applying astonishingly number of ingredients—yet never ever had its viral second. It is about time: Guanciale and pecorino enjoy direct roles, relatively than becoming muted or mellowed in the qualifications. 

Roman cooks claim that gricia originated in northern Lazio, deep in the Apennine mountains. Shepherds introduced city-dwellers to the dish above a century in the past, and it trapped.  Without a doubt, it would go on to inspire Rome’s other iconic pastas: Spiked with tomato sauce, it became amatriciana. Enriched with egg, it birthed carbonara. But despite the around the globe renown of these later creations, gricia never ever got its due—even if it is however a pillar of the Roman trattoria.  

These days, gricia is my go-to purchase at Salumeria Roscioli, a gourmand deli and cafe in Rome’s centro storico. There, crisp cubes of guanciale mingle with “al chiodo” (not very al dente) rigatoni and 3 unique, fragrant styles of black pepper. 

When I have pals in city, I just take them to Armando al Pantheon (a block from, you guessed it, the Pantheon), where chef Claudio Gargioli softens the guanciale with a splash of white wine. The porky strips get caught in the strands as you twirl. 

Gricia alla Katie? For starters, I’m a rigatoni female: Who can resist individuals porky bits that settle inside the tubular architecture? Guanciale-clever, I spring for rectangles, as opposed to cubes, which crisp up nicely (see take note underneath). The sauce is motivated by my local, Cesare al Casaletto, a trattoria quite a few blocks from my condominium. It’s outstandingly silky. I replicate it at home by cooking the pasta midway in frivolously salted h2o to compensate for the very salty pecorino, then include it to the pan with a ladleful of pasta water, a healthy dose of guanciale, and its flavorful rendered fat. The essential, I’ve figured out, is to swirl the pasta as it finishes cooking to achieve a ideal mantecatura (emulsion). To replicate and get that perfect bite, use your senses, somewhat than a timer, to figure out when the pasta is carried out and has the ideal bite. Final occur generous cranks of black pepper, and adequate finely grated Pecorino Romano to glue it all alongside one another. Make it currently to be instantly transported to the animated trattorias of Rome no make any difference where by you are. 

Observe: If you fancy crisp guanciale, cook dinner it about medium heat and transfer it to a plate, leaving the body fat in the pan, even though you put together the dish. Then incorporate the crisp guanciale with the pasta just before plating. If attainable, seek out guanciale with a easy black pepper and salt cure, instead than just one flavored with fennel, garlic, or chile. The dish is all about the pure flavor of black pepper.

Produce: 4

Time: 30 minutes

Table of Contents


  • 9 oz. guanciale
  • ¾ cup finely grated Pecorino Romano (2½ oz.), divided
  • Good sea salt
  • 1 lb. dried rigatoni pasta
  • 2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper


  1. Minimize off and discard the guanciale’s seasoned crust, then minimize into ¼-inch-thick slabs. Slice every slab lengthwise, then slash into ¾-inch-thick strips.
  2. To a significant, cold solid-iron skillet or pan, incorporate the guanciale and transform the warmth to medium-very low. Cook, stirring occasionally, until eventually the fat renders, 10–15 minutes. Remove from the heat and established aside to amazing slightly.
  3. In the meantime, deliver a large pot of salted drinking water (see headnote) to a boil, then  insert the rigatoni and boil until eventually scarcely al dente, a minor extra than 50 % of the advisable cooking time on the package. Transfer 1 cup of the pasta cooking h2o to the pan with the guanciale and established aside a different ½ cup.
  4. Drain the pasta, then incorporate it to the pan with the guanciale and flip the warmth to medium-large. Prepare dinner, swirling the pan, until eventually the pasta is al dente and coated in sauce, 5–7 minutes. Flip off the heat and stir in the black pepper and  ½ cup of the Pecorino. If the sauce is as well thick, little by little include plenty of reserved pasta drinking water to make a clean, creamy sauce. Serve quickly, passing the remaining Pecorino for sprinkling.

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