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02.05.2019

First, we need a stove.

Cooking is an extremely rare occurrence in this Scouter’s kitchen, so much so that it takes us 25 months of living in our apartment before we feel the need to boil water. Or source a cutting knife, salt, pepper.

In other words, we essentially set up an entire kitchen to sample Cacio e Pepe’s fresh handmade pastas, and despite the fact that it will probably be another two years before we wield another colander, the endeavour is worth it.

Procuring the pastas themselves is the easy part - a few WhatsApp messages and a Bandra pick-up - and truth be told, cooking them is pretty simple too, especially with the help of some very competent friends.

We begin with supple ribbons of tagliatelle, which need little more than two minutes in boiling water and a toss in bright, lemony white pesto before they are transformed into a dish Alison Roman would applaud. The noodles hold their shape and springiness and are best served al dente, as are long curls of tomato busiate, which a dapper boy tricks out aglio olio style, garnishing with the neatest garlic chips we've seen.

If you’re feeling fancy, try Cacio’s lemon and ricotta tortellini, fat, green dumplings that taste like a swim off the coast of Capri. We also wolf down a batch of porcini ravioli, earthy and funky enough that you can coat them in a simple brown butter sauce and serve to your most finicky friend.

Dessert is Cacio’s mini Nutella and orange curd pies. Featuring lacklustre fillings and undercooked crusts, these are a downer, even more disappointing than the sage-and-butter sauce that we overcook into congealed glue.

A batch of potato gnocchi is sent over the Sea Link – an easy task thanks to the neat cardboard boxes the pastas are packed in – and served days later in a reduced red wine and chorizo sauce. Pulled out of the freezer and boiled for just a minute, it makes for a decadent brunch, the kind you cook for yourself on a midweek summer holiday.

Perhaps we’ll try it too, two years from now.

Getting there: Whatsapp +919619403108 to order and for the menu, follow @cacioepepeindia on Instagram; Rs 400 for 200 gms of lemon and ricotta tortellini.

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Food & Drink