More Delicious Sardines! (This Time Over Spaghetti)

Monahan's Seafood Market | Fresh Whole Fish, Fillets, Shellfish, Recipes, Catering & Lunch Counter-Ann Arbor, Michigan

Sardines are hands down one of my all time favorite fish; they are full off flavor, have a subtle sweetness and are one of the most healthful foods in the world. At home we usually simply grill them, pan sear and finish in the oven, serve over caponata or with caper sauce.

whole fresh sardines

We got in some gorgeous fresh Portuguese sardines this week and I wanted to try something different. Browsing the web and some of my old cookbooks the classic Sicilian pasta con le sarde kept reappearing. Some of the recipes used canned sardines (and there are some good quality canned) or fresh. Most of the sauces used no tomatoes but a lot of olive oil, fennel, pine nuts, raisins, toasted bread crumbs, anchovies and saffron. Some called for chopping up the fried sardines, some with whole fillets over the sauce.

Filleting a sardine was something new to me. I’ve always thought that sardines should be eaten whole off the bone, that’s half the fun! Boning out these little guys isn’t all that hard, you just cut off the head and tail, scale and gut it, slice along the spine, pull the spine out and cut or brush the ribs out. At first I planned on making authentic Sicilian style sardines over pasta but thought improvising with ingredients we already had would be just fine. We had spaghetti, Ortiz anchovies, pine nuts, raisins, garlic, onion, a can of San Marzano tomatoes and we were ready to go. The recipe we came up with may not be true to the traditional style but I have to say it was mighty tasty!

We only can find fresh Portuguese sardines on occasion but we almost always have good quality vessel frozen Portuguese fish. Were expecting fresh this weekend. Give this recipe a go! I think you’ll love it.

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Monahan's Seafood

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