In a large saute pan set over medium heat, heat 2 tbsp (30 ml) of the olive oil large, then add the guanciale or pancetta and fry until golden and crisp. A lot of fat will render in the pan, but that’s ok, this will flavor the sauce and give it a silky texture. Add the onion and crushed red pepper. When the onion is translucent, pour in the wine and bring to a boil until completely evaporated. Add the crushed tomatoes and cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes, until the sauce is thick. Season lightly with a pinch of sea salt, keeping in mind the Pecorino will season the sauce as well. Lower the heat to the minimum to keep the sauce warm while the pasta cooks.
If you’re making the Amatriciana sauce ahead of time, you can take it off the heat now and let it cool to room temperature. Transfer it to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 4 days.
While the Amatriciana sauce is simmering, bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil, salt generously, then add the bucatini pasta to the water. Set a timer for 1 minute less than the cooking time specified by the manufacturer. Using tongs, gently move the pasta around during the first few minutes to make sure the bucatini pasta doesn’t clump together. Shortly before the pasta is ready, scoop up and save 1/2 cup (125 ml) of starchy pasta cooking water.
Drain the bucatini pasta, then transfer it to the saute pan with the Amatriciana sauce. The sauce should still be set over low heat. (If you made the Amatriciana sauce ahead of time, reheat it while the pasta is cooking.) Add the grated Pecorino cheese, the remaining extra-virgin olive oil (2 tbsp/30 ml) and the reserved pasta cooking water. Using a spatula, stir the pasta to melt and incorporate the Pecorino.
Serve Bucatini All’Amatriciana piping hot, garnished with a sprinkle more grated Pecorino cheese, if desired.
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