After an Italian classic was “reinvented” on PBS’s The Mind of a Chef, Momofuku rock star David Chang proclaimed that “Italians are rolling in their graves.” The dish in point: Cacio e Pepe, but with instant ramen instead of pasta. A sin to some, but to others, a playful, off-the-cuff creation. The traditional recipe calls for two kinds of cheese: Pecorino and Parmesan. Both are salty, pungent and serve not just as cheese, but as a seasoning (read: go easy on the salt for this one). For college students however, buying more than one packet of pre-shredded cheese during your weekly – or fortnightly – grocery run might seem like overkill, so we’re sticking with just Parmesan cheese. While the ingredient list is short, when done right, you’ll end up with a hearty, creamy plate of decadence sans the hole in your wallet.
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 11 minutes
2 cups water
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon black pepper
2 packages instant ramen (minus the seasoning packets)
1 handful oyster mushrooms (optional)
1. Combine water, butter and olive oil in a saucepan and bring it to a boil.
2. Stir often and reduce heat to medium before adding the cheese and black pepper. Add the instant ramen and continue to stir so that the cheese doesn’t clump up.
3. If there is too much liquid for the ramen to absorb, pour some out. Once the noodles are cooked and the liquid has reduced, the dish is ready. You want the sauce to coat the back of a spoon.
4. Serve immediately and eat as soon as possible. Bonus: quickly stir-fry some oyster mushrooms on the side to convince yourself it’s healthy.