Spring Vegetable Cacio e Pepe

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  • Yield: Serves four 1x


  • 1/2 lb asparagus, tough ends trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 cups chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 8 ounces whole-wheat spaghetti
  • 3 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/3 cup grated pecorino romano
  • 1/2 cup peas (or fava beans)
  • 1/2 cup marinated artichoke hearts


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Transfer asparagus to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Roast for about 10 minutes, or until tender.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Reserve 3/4 cup of pasta water before draining.
  3. In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons butter over medium heat, add black pepper and cook for about 1 minute, until fragrant. Add 1/2 cup reserved pasta water and bring to a simmer.
  4. Add pasta and remaining butter and Parmesan, and stir until cheese melts. Remove from heat and add pecorino, tossing until pasta is coated with the cheesy sauce. If the pasta seems dry, add the remaining pasta water. Add asparagus, peas or fava, and artichoke hearts, and toss to combine.


If using fresh fava beans: Bring salted water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add fava beans and blanch for 1 minute. Transfer the beans to ice cold water and let sit for a few minutes. When fava beans have cooled completely, remove from the ice bath and peel off shells.