Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Midweek Pasta - Spaghetti With Sardines, Pine Nuts And Breadcrumbs
We have pasta as least once a week; that's when tummy get to cook one of his favourite dishes of all time - different variations of spaghetti with chillies, anchovies, capers and pancetta. It is always a treat as he has perfected the dish after many years of practice.
For some unknown reasons he decided to cook something different this week by adding sardines to another tried and tested recipe that we both adore - spaghetti with anchovies and breadcrumbs. It was a great decision and we both went back for our second serves.
For those not familiar with Italian cooking, this might sound like a very strange dish, but the magical combination of flavour and texture from such unlikely allies will have you come back for more!
P.S only homemade breadcrumbs should be used in this recipe.
serves 4 as a one dish meal with a salad
500 g of spaghetti
70 g of sultanas
1 red onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, chopped
3 anchovies, chopped
a pinch of chili flakes (optional)
1 cup of homemade breadcrumbs*
1 can of sardine in olive
4 tbs of pine nuts, toasted
1/3 cup of chopped parsley
salt and pepper to taste
god olive oil
grated parmesan cheese
* to make your own breadcrumbs - place bread slices of your choice (mustn't be stale) on a wire rack then dry in a very low oven for 15 minutes. Turn the bread slices half way through. Blend in in a food processor when cool. Place breadcrumbs in a hot pan and dry roast til golden. Add in enough olive oil to coat the crumbs and set aside.
The stars of the dish and unlikely bedfellows - sardines, pine nuts, sultanas and parmesan cheese.
Saute onion, garlic, anchovies and chili flakes if using with plenty of olive oil for 5 minutes.
Finally add in the pre-fried breadcrumbs and mix well.
Cook spaghetti together with the sultanas with plenty of salty water until al dente. Mix drained spaghetti and sultanas with half of breadcrumbs mixture. Always add a little of the pasta cooking water at this stage. Check for seasonings.
Plate the spaghetti, top with extra breadcrumbs mixture and drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil and don't forget the grated parmesan cheese.