Pasta con Cavolfiore |Traditional Sicilian Pasta with Cauliflower and Anchovies
Pasta con Cavolfiore, a Montalbano Favourite from Sicily
I saw this dish, pasta with cauliflower, in an episode of Inspector Montalbano and it went by so fast I hardly had time to take it in. Fortunately it's so simple to put together that my first attempt was enthusiastically received by my family.
I've never used cauliflower like this before but I certainly will be in future.
Montalbano prepared his lunch with sparaceddu, but I didn't have any of this green cauliflower so I just used the ordinary white variety. In Sicily, cauliflower seems to also be broccoli, but whatever you want to call the vegetables is neither here nor there. This pasta dish is delish.
First, break up the cauliflower
Ingredients - This is what I used
- A large cauliflower broken into small florets
- A large onion, sliced
- 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
- A jar of anchovies in oil, drained and chopped. There were 4 in my jar.
- Bunch of fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley from my garden, chopped semi-fine
- Freshly ground black pepper
- A packet of rigatoni
Getting ready to serve - Almost there!
Method - This is what I did
- I first washed the cauliflower and simmered it in a large pot of water for about 5 minutes. My main concern was making sure that it stayed firm and didn't get mushy.
- Then I removed the cauliflower and broke it up into florets. I kept the water to cook the pasta. I put the cauliflower water back on to boil and got the rigatoni ready to cook
- The onion and garlic were tossed in a pan over medium heat in about a tablespoon of oil until golden.
- I tipped the anchovies straight from the jar into the pan and mashed them in with a wooden spoon.
- By this time the water in the pot was boiling and I added the pasta
- It was time to add the florets to the pan of anchovies and garlic! I mixed them through, and turned off the heat
- When the rigatoni was al dente, I drained it (keeping a little bit of the water just in case)
- I put the pasta into a warmed serving bowl and poured the hot cauliflower sauce over it, tossing as I did so.
- This is when I stirred the parsley through and seasoned it all with the black pepper
- The sauce was a little dry so I added some of the water I had retained from the pasta pot
How about you?
Do you use cauliflower very often?
I love Inspector Montalbano
I have a passion for a handful of fictional detectives. Salvo Montalbano is one of them.I love the Sicilian food too.
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© 2010 Susanna Duffy