- recipe -

Sicilian Pasta With Sardines, Cauliflower, and Raisins

It may sound like a strange combination, but this earthy version of the traditional Sicilian dish Pasta con le Sarde has a delightful flavor and texture. It can also be prepared with fresh fennel bulb instead of cauliflower, or by adding crushed tomatoes, tomato paste or pine nuts.

Makes four to six servings

  • 3 tbs. olive oil
  • 4 cups finely chopped cauliflower, stems included (about 1/2 head of cauliflower)
  • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1/3 cup golden raisins, chopped and soaked in 1/4 cup warm water
  • Pinch of saffron, soaked in 1 tbs. warm water
  • 1 can (4.25 ounce) sardine fillets, drained
  • 8 ounces gluten-free pasta, cooked
  • 1 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper (or crushed red chili flakes) to taste
  • Zest and juice of one lemon
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over high heat and pan-roast the cauliflower until tender and golden brown. Add garlic, raisins, saffron and sardines. Cook and stir until the sardines break apart. Toss in the pasta and parsley and season with salt and pepper, lemon zest, and juice. Serve with Pecorino Romano cheese.

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