Inspired by guanciale (an Italian bacon made with pig cheeks or jowls) crafted by one of her sous chefs, Spiaggiaâ€™s Grueneberg combined the cured meat with Tipopils (one of the restaurantâ€™s new Italian taps), sun-dried tomatoes and ricotta in this hearty dish. â€śThe beerâ€™s bitterness might be too much for fresh pasta,â€ť she warns, â€śso use dry pasta. And I really recommend drinking the beer with the dish; the pasta brings out the beer but also calms some of its bitterness.â€ť
- 1 pound bucatini or spaghetti
- 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
- 6 ounces guanciale or pancetta, thinly sliced
- 4 ounces Italian sun-dried cherry tomatoes in olive oil
- 16 ounces Birrificio Italiano Birra Tipopils
- 4 ounces pressed sheepâ€™s milk ricotta or ricotta salata, divided
- 2 teaspoons dried Calabrian oregano
- kosher salt
- black pepper
• Bring a large pot of water (about 6 to 8 quarts) to a boil and season generously with kosher salt. Add the bucatini to the boiling water and cook for the amount of time recommended on the pasta box minus 2 minutes.
• Meanwhile, heat the extra virgin olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the guanciale to the pan and cook until crispy.
• Drain all but about 2 tablespoons of oil from the pan; return the pan with the guanciale and the remaining fat to the heat. Add the cherry tomatoes to the pan and fry about 1 minute, stirring frequently. Add the beer to the guanciale-tomato mixture.
• Dip a ladle into the pasta water and remove 4 ounces of pasta water; set aside. Strain the pasta in a colander. Add the pasta to the tomato-guanciale sauce and stir to combine, adding some of the reserved pasta water as needed to thin the sauce.
• When the pasta is al dente and the sauce has thickened, add 2 ounces of the grated pressed ricotta and the dried oregano.
• Finish the pasta with ground pepper, and if needed, a splash of pasta water to lighten the sauce; check for seasoning and add salt if necessary. Serve the pasta in a large, shallow bowl; using a vegetable peeler, shave the remaining pressed ricotta over the pasta.