Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons salt. Cook the fettuccine in the boiling water according to the package directions, until tender yet al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving the pasta water, and place in a large, heated bowl.
Add the diced butter and grated cheese and toss with tongs or other utensil until the butter and cheese have melted, adding a splash or two of the pasta cooking water to keep the mixture from getting too "tight". Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and serve immediately.
Recipe copyright 2000, Mario Batali. All Rights Reserved.