Originally posted June 11, 2015

Cacio e pepe with lemon and asparagus

Cacio e pepe with lemon and asparagus by alchemisty

Adding the lemon juice at the end of the cooking process really brightens up this simple but very tasty pasta dish. Make sure you remember to keep 1 cup of water from the pasta cooking pot before you drain the pasta--it's key to the sauce.


  • 8 oz linguine
  • 10-15 stalks of asparagus, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 5 large cremini mushrooms, chopped
  • 1/2 white onion, chopped
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1/2 C sour cream
  • 2 t fresh cracked pepper
  • 1/2 to 3/4 C pecorino or parmesan, finely grated
  • 1 cup pasta water (from boiling the pasta)
  • 1 small lemon (meyer or other)
2-4 servings


Boil some water in a large pot and then cook the linguine for 2 minutes less time than the package recommends (it will finish cooking with butter and sauce). Before you drain the pasta, set aside 1 C of water from the pasta pot for cooking.

In the meantime, saute the onions and mushrooms together and steam the asparagus. Set aside when done.

Put the drained pasta in a non-stick skillet with the butter and 1/2 C pasta water. Bring to a simmer. As it thickens, add the sour cream and pepper. Once the pasta is cooked to your liking, add 1/2 to 3/4 C pecorino or parmesan and mix together thoroughly.

Add the mushrooms, onions and asparagus and mix together thoroughly. Squeeze the juice of one small lemon over the top and mix together thoroughly. That's all!

If the pasta looks dry toward the end of the process, you can add a bit more pasta water and/or drizzle some high quality olive oil over the top.

25 minutes


  • commented almost 5 years ago

    ever since i saw bourdain eat this i vowed my first taste would be in italy someday

Adapted from

Martha Stewart Living

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