Swordfish and Eggplant pasta – Pasta con pescespada e melanzane

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. pasta
  • 14 oz. peeled tomatoes without seeds
  • 9 oz. slices of swordfish
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large eggplant
  • 2 oz. peeled almonds
  • dry white wine
  • seed oil
  • fresh mint
  • salt
  • pepper TT

 

Preparation
Wash the eggplant, remove its stem and dice it; then soak in salted water. Brown the crushed clove of garlic in a saucepan with oil.Add the chopped tomato, a pinch of salt and a dash of pepper and let thicken for about ten minutes. Add the skinned and diced swordfish, sprinkle with some wine; mix and cook on a moderate flame for 15 minutes. The diced eggplant is dried completely.Then fry in abundant seed oil; drain on paper towels. Boil the pasta in salty hot water; strain and toss in the saucepan with the fish sauce. Add the eggplants, the minced almonds and the minced mint, mix well and serve.

Tuna and fennel spaghetti – Spaghetti con tonno e finocchietto

It is a specialty from the area of Modica known as “lasagne cacate”, and was the Sicilian farmers’ traditional dish on New Year’s Day.
Homemade lasagnas, made with eggs and flour, were traditionally prepared especially in the hinterland.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. of spaghetti
  • 9 oz. of fresh tuna in slices
  • 1 small bundle of wild fennel
  • 1.7 oz. of pine nuts
  • 1 tbsp of capers
  • 1 lb of peeled tomatoes
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1/2 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • dry white wine
  • salt
  • paprika

Preparation
Remove tops and wash the wild fennel; boil in plenty of salty water, drain (keeping some of the liquid) and mince. Soak the tuna in cold water for about twenty minutes; dry and dice. Sautè the crushed garlic in a saucepan with the oil and the minced onion. Add the farmer fennel, the capers and the pine nuts. Let the flavors marry a little, and add the tuna, sprinkle with some wine and let evaporate. Add the chopped and seedless tomatoes; add salt, flavor with a pinch of paprika and simmer for about 1/2 hour, incorporating ( if necessary) some spoons of warm water. Cook the spaghetti “al dente” and season.

Variation
You can enrich this recipe with 1/2 fried diced eggplant and a handful of toasted and minced almonds.

Trapani’s pesto and pasta – Pasta con il pesto alla trapanese

It is a specialty typical of the area of Trapani which is often accompanied by fried fish or slices of fried eggplants.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. homemade pasta
  • “busiate” type
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • fresh basil 1 bu.
  • 4 1/2 med. tomatoes peeled seeded and chopped
  • 1 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • grated parmesan (or pecorino)
  • 3 1/2 oz. blanched almonds
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Put some garlic, the leaves of basil, the almonds and a pinch of salt and crush finely in the mortar to get a mash; add the tomatoes and keep crushing until the mixture is well-blended. Stir in a pinch of salt, dust abundantly with ground black pepper and oil. Cook pasta “al dente”, and season with the sauce and serve immediately. Grated parmesan (or pecorino) is served separately.

Braised cauliflower and pasta – Pasta con il cavolfiore

Fresh sea urchins are necessary to prepare this dish. Open them with the special utensil or with a pair of scissors and you scoop the eggs out with a teaspoon.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. Bucatini: Hollow
  • spaghetti like pasta strands
  • 1 cauliflower of about 2 lbs
  • 1 raisins (soaked in warm water and drained)
  • 1 oz. pine nuts
  • 1 small bag of saffron (soaked in 1/2 glass warm water)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 8 fillets of anchovy in oil
  • 1/2 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • dry white wine
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Wash and parboil the cauliflower tops for 5 minutes. Mince the onion and brown in a saucepan with oil; add the dripped and chopped fillets of anchovy and dissolve in the seasoning, crushing with a fork. When the sauce is well- blended add the raisins, and the pine-seeds. Sprinkle with wine and let thicken. Put the cauliflower in the casserole and let the flavors marry for a few minutes. Moisten with 1/2 glass of warm saffron water. Add salt, pepper and cook for about 15 minutes. In the meantime, cook the pasta in abundant salted water. Strain al dente, season with the prepared sauce and let rest for some minutes before serving.

Variation
You can enrich the seasoning with the pulp of two big mature tomatoes, finely chopped.

Anchovy, bread crumb pasta sauce – Pasta con le acciughe e la mollica

This is a traditional recipe common throughout the island of which exit two principal versions and numerous variations. In eastern Sicily the seasoning is plain, while in the western areas it is enriched with tomato sauce (or concentrate).

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. of trenette or bucatini
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • fresh parsley, 1 bu. minced
  • 3 1/2 oz. breadcrumbs
  • 3 1/2 oz. salted anchovies (or fillets of anchovies in oil)
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Toast the breadcrumbs in a non-stick pan and set aside. Brown the crushed garlic in a frying pan with 1/2 glass of oil and remove.
Get the salt out of the anchoves (rinse in water), remove bones, chop and add to the oil. Crush with a fork. As soon as the sauce is well-blended, add plenty of pepper and pour in a bowl. Flavor the breadcrumbs in the left-over oil in the pan. In salty hot water cook the pasta “al dente”, strain and season with the anchovy sauce; sprinkle with the breadcrumbs and minced parsley and serve.

Variation
This dish is enhanced with raisins and toasted pine nuts this is typical of the area of Enna. Wild fennel is boiled in the pasta water.
The fennel is then minced and browned garlic and onion, then some tomato sauce is added. They anchovy oil is seasoned with the wild fennel sauce, the toasted breadcrumbs with the anchovies, the other sauce and finished with grated pecorino.

Pasta “Carrettiera” (with fresh garlic or tomato sauce) – Pasta alla carrettiera

There are a couple of regional variations for this refreshing pasta dish. Typically in Easter Sicily the simply marry the flavor of a good olive oil with garlic. The oil mixed with pasta and garnished with a pinch of Cayenne and a sprinkle of a hard salty ricotta cheese. In the Western part of the island ripe tomatoes and herbs add to the quality of freshness. A variation follows.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. spaghetti
  • 1/2 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • parslet
  • 1 hot pepper
  • 2 1/2 oz. tuna botargo (dried and salted tuna eggs)
  • 2 oz. Blanched almonds (optional)
  • salt TT

Preparation
To the peeled, seeded, and chopped tomatoes add the minced garlic, the basil, a pinch of salt and a dash of pepper; mix and let rest for at least 2 hours. Boil the spaghetti in salted water cook “al dente” and season with the prepared sauce. Sprinkle with grated cheese and serve.

Variation
Grated salty ricotta is often used instead of pecorino or parmesan.

Lasagnas with meat sauce and ricotta – Lasagne con ragù e ricotta

It is a specialty from the area of Modica known and was the Sicilian farmers’ traditional dish on New Year’s Day. Homemade lasagnas, made with eggs and flour, were traditionally prepared especially in the hinterland.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. fresh wide lasagnas
  • noodles
  • 9 oz. minced veal
  • 7 oz. pork sausage
  • 1 onion
  • 1/2 glass of red full-bodied wine
  • 1 oz. butter
  • 7 oz. tomato concentrate
  • 7 oz. sheep ricotta
  • grated pecorino
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Sautè the minced onion, in a saucepan, with butter and a trickle of oil and brown the minced meat and the sausage, skinned and crumbled. Sprinkle with wine and, when the mixture has thickened add the tomato concentrate dissolved in 4 cups of warm water. Add salt and pepper and simmer for 1 hour. Cook the lasagna noodles in abundant salty water, with the additional of 1 spoon of oil;
strain al dente and season with the meat sauce. Transfer to a platter and sprinkle a hanful of pecorino cheese; toss and sprinkle with sieved ricotta, flavored with abundant fresly ground black pepper. Toss and serve.

Pasta “Norma” – Pasta alla Norma

It is a specialty from Catania, named after the famous opera “Norma” by the musician Vincenzo Bellini, according to the local custom, the perfect balance of typically Sicilian flavors.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. “penne” (mostaccioli)
  • 2 lbs. ripe tomatoes
  • 1 large eggplant
  • 5 oz. of salty ricotta
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • peanut
  • canola
  • or other frying
  • high heat oil
  • fresh basil 1 bu.
  • sugar TT
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Blanch and peel the tomatoes, remove seeds and chop. Brown the crushed cloves of garlic in a saucepan with oil; remove them and add the tomato, a handful of leaves of basil, a pinch of salt, a dash of pepper and a pinch of sugar. Cover and simmer to thicken. Slice the eggplant, sprinkle with salt and put in a colander to drip the water in excess; rinse, dry and fry in seed oil as needed. Cook the pasta in salted boiling water; drain at”al dente” and transfer to saucepan with the tomato sauce, half of the eggplants and some spoons of grated ricotta. Transfer to a large platter dish and cover with the remaining eggplants and grated ricotta. Serve immediatly.

Spaghetti with sea urchins – Spaghetti ai ricci di mare

Fresh sea urchins are necessary to prepare this dish. Open them with the special utensil or with a pair of scissors and you scoop the eggs out with a teaspoon.

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. spaghetti
  • 80 sea urchins
  • 1/2 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • parsley
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 2 oz. chopped almonds (optional)

Preparation
Carefully open the sea urchins and scoop the eggs out putting them in a bowl. Crush the garlic in a mortar with a pinch of salt; in a bowl combine the mixture and some minced parsley, oil (slightly heated bain-marie), a dash of pepper and, if you like, the almonds. Combine the mixture and the sea urchin eggs and let rest. Cook the spaghetti in abundant salty water; drain at “al dente” and season with the mixture.

Variation
You can enrich the seasoning with the pulp of two big mature tomatoes, finely chopped.

Spaghetti with garlic and oil – Spaghetti aglio e olio

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. spaghetti
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • grated pecorino
  • salt
  • pepper or Cayenne pepper TT

Preparation
Slice and brown the garlic in a frying pan with the oil and, if desired, the chopped Cayenne pepper. Sautè the garlic until translucent and lightly browned. Do not overcook. Boil the spaghetti in salted hot water ” al dente” strain, and mix with the prepared seasoning (without the Cayenne pepper). Sprinkle with plenty of freshly ground black pepper (if you did not use the Cayenne pepper); sprinkle with pecorino and serve.

Spaghetti with tuna botargo – Spaghetti alla bottarga di tonno

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. spaghetti
  • 1/2 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • parslet
  • 1 hot pepper
  • 2 1/2 oz. tuna botargo (dried and salted tuna eggs)
  • 2 oz. Blanched almonds (optional)
  • salt TT

Preparation
Sautè the minced garlic and parsley in a saucepan with oil and chopped hot pepper; remove from heat, add 2 tablespoons of grated botargo and mix. Remove the hot pepper. Cook the spaghetti in salty boiling water; drain at ” al dente” and transfer to the casserole with the seasoning. Add the remaining botargo, a handful of snipped parsley and, if you like, the chopped almonds; toss and serve.

Pasta with Sardines – Pasta con le sarde

It is a recipe typical of western Sicily, but common to the whole island. Among the many variations there is the one using tomato sauce instead of saffron. A hasty version also exists: the pasta is seasoned in the saucepan, let rest for about ten minutes then served.

Ingredients for 6 servings

  • 14 oz. bucatini (hollow spaghetti)
  • 1 1/2 lbs. fresh sardines
  • 3 small farmer fennels
  • 1 onion
  • 1 small bag of saffron
  • 1 oz. butter
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 2 oz. of fillets of anchovy in oil
  • 1/2 glass of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons of pine nuts
  • 2 oz. raisins
  • 2 oz. blanched
  • almonds
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Clean and wash the wild fennel; then boil in abundant salty water. Strain ( reserving some of the water) and shred finely. Bone the sardines, and flake them. Slice the onion and brown in a saucepan with the oil and the minced anchovies. Add the pine-seeds, the raisins ( which must have been soaked in warm water and then squeezed), the wild fennels and the sardines. Mix, sprinkle with some wine, add salt, pepper and the saffron dissolved in 1/2 glass of lukewarm water. Let the jiuce thicken, combine the ingredients. Keep warm. Cook the bucatini in the reserved vegetable water; cook al dente, drain and toss in the saucepan with the seasoning. Transfer the pasta to a baking-pan, buttered and sprinkle with breadcrumbs; spread the chopped almonds and bits of butter and baker for about twenty minutes. The pasta with sardines flan is excellent also served warm.

Pasta and Fish soup – Minestra di pasta con pesce

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 7 oz. small pasta (stars, rings, osmarina, etc.)
  • 2 lbs. assorted fish for soup
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 stalk of celery
  • 1 spoon tomato paste
  • fresh parsley 1 bu.
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Clean the fish thoroughly. Sautè a crushed clove of garlic in a saucepan with 1/2 cup of oil; take out and add the shredded onion,celery and parsley. Dissolve the tomato concentrate in 6 1/4 cups of water and simmer for a few minutes; add salt, pepper and the fish and cook on low heat for 10-15 minutes. Take the fish out, clear of bones, flake and put back in the casserole with the strained broth. Boil and add the small pasta. Add some minced parsley to garnish and serve.

Zucchini and linguine – Linguine con zucchine fritte

Ingredients for 4 servings

  • 14 oz. linguine
  • 2 green zucchini
  • 1 glass extra virgin olive oil
  • parmesan (or pecorino) grated
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • salt
  • pepper TT

Preparation
Wash and cut the zucchini; then sprinkle with salt. Brown the crushed clove of garlic in a frying pan with oil; discard the garlic and fry the zucchini. Drip and keep warm in a dish. Boil the pasta in salty water; strain al dente and season with the same oil the vegetables were fried in; dust with pepper and toss in the zucchini.

Baked Pasta – Anelletti al forno

Ingredients for 4 servings

1 lbs. ring pasta, 9 oz. ground veal (or a mix of minced veal and pork), 3 cups tomato sauce,1 medium onion, 1/2 carrot, 1/2 celery stalk, 1 1/2 oz. butter, 6 tablespoons extra virgin oliveoil, basil, 3 1/2 oz. fresh caciocavallo, 2 oz. of grated parmesan, 7 oz. shelled peas, 2 spoonstomato concentrate, fresh parsley 1 bu., 1 large eggplant, seed oil, 3 boiled eggs, 1 smallglass of dry Marsala wine (or 1/2 glass of dry white wine), 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, sugar TT, salt, pepper TT.

Preparation

Brown the minced celery, carrot and 1/2 onion in a saucepan with 1 tablespoon of butter and 2 tablespoons of oil; add the minced meat and brown. Add some wine and the peas and simmer for a couple of minutes. Dissolve the tomato concentrate in a cup of warm water: add salt, peppersprinkle with minced parsley and cook at low heat, for about 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.wash the eggplant; cut off its steam, slice, put in a colander and sprinkle with coarse salt and let rest. After 1 hour rinse, dry and fry the eggplant in abundant seed oil; lay the slices on paper towels to drain excess fat. Brown the remaining onion, in a casserole with oil; add the tomato paste, a pinch of salt, a dash of pepper, a pinch of sugar and a handful of leaves of basil. Mix and cook at medium heat for about twenty minutes. In the meantime, cook the pasta in plenty of salty water; cook al dente and drain, season
with the sauce and the grated parmesan ( leave 1 spoonful). Pour half of this mixture in a buttered baking-pan sprinkled with breadcrumbs; cover with the meat sauce. Arrange in layers the eggplants, the sliced eggs and the diced caciocavallo. Cover with the remaining pasta and sprinkle with the parmesan and a handful of breadcrumbs. Top with bits of butter and bake for about 1 hour.

Variation

In some areas of eastern Sicily baked pasta is enriched with bits of salami or sausage, fresh tuma instead of caciocavallo and meatballs with peas in meat sauce instead of minced meat. Furthermore, a type of flan (“gattò”) is made with the same seasoning of this recipe in the whole island, with some local variations. Shortcrust (with little sugar) filled with macaronis, used instead of rings, seasoned with meat sauce and flavored with some truffe makes, instead, the “timballo (flan) of the monzù”.