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Pasta and Sardines
26 Marzo 2004
Ricette degli amici
Ignazio Vinci has given me the recipe of ‘pasta con le sarde’. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’ll pass it on to you anyway. Ignazio is Sicilian and he is a gourmet, I’m so sure this recipe is excellent.

INGREDIENTS

700 gr of ‘bucatini’

1000 gr of sardines

1 fillet of salt anchovy

200 gr of fresh-cut wild fennel

100 gr of tomato sauce

half-spoon of tomato extract

100 gr of pine-seeds and raisin

2 spoonfuls of Pecorino (sheep’s milk cheese)

1 white onion

1 clove of garlic

bread-crumb

oil, salt, pepper

PREPARATION

Boil the fresh-cut wild fennel into abundant water. Maintain the cooking water that will then be used to cook the pasta. The pasta will be cooked underdone and strained a couple of minutes before than usual.

Fry the sardines (not necessarily until their complete cooking) and then cut them into slices.

Brown in a pan: olive-oil, 4-5 sardines, the fillet of salt anchovy, the onions previously minutely minced, 1 clove of garlic, the fennel cut into pieces (1-2 cm), the tomato sauce, the tomato extract, the pine-seeds and raisin, salt and pepper.

When the pasta is ready, blend it with the sauce (add the pecorino, at will).

Pour the whole into a large rectangular baking-pan, previously spread with oil and a layer of bread-crumb.

After having laid the pasta as a timbale, add another layer of bread-crumb (by means of oil) in the upper part, by strongly pressing the pasta against the pan.

Lastly, bake it hot, until the timbale has browned.

Ignazio specifies these quantities are for 6 persons.

I just would like to add that ‘mollica di pane’ or bread-crumb means to the Sicilians what ‘pangrattato’ or bread-crumbs means to the Continentals.

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