Grated Pecorino Romano, a hard straw-white cheese, emboldens spaghetti. Of the many varieties of pecorino, Romano is the most popular and is widely available here. It has an intense, peppery flavor — think saltier Parmesan with a kick.
12 ounces spaghetti
1 1/2 cups finely shredded Pecorino Romano cheese (4 ounces)
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook spaghetti until al dente. Reserve 1 cup pasta water. Drain pasta; return to pot.
To pasta in pot, add 1 cup reserved pasta water. Gradually add 1 cup Pecorino, tossing constantly with tongs until cheese is melted; add pepper. Toss to coat pasta lightly; if desired, gradually add a little more pasta water to thin. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup cheese, and serve immediately.
Make sure to freshly shred the cheese, as it will melt more easily.