Well, today is a special holiday that taps into my Sicilian side, the Feast of St. Joseph. Joseph, Mary's husband, is known by many Sicilian's as their patron saint. According to legend, there was a severe drought at the time, and the people prayed for their patron saint to bring them rain. They promised that if he answered their prayers, they would prepare a large feast to honor him. The rain did come, and the people of Sicily prepared a large banquet for their patron saint.
Because the feast occurs during Lent, traditionally no meat is allowed on the celebration table. Foods are traditionally served containing bread crumbs to represent saw dust since St. Joseph was a carpenter.
Since my grandfather, father, brother, and varied uncles and cousins all share Saint Joseph's name, my family has celebrated this feast with a traditional Sicilian dinner. I wanted to share my favorite dish from this important feast.
Pasta Con Sarde (Pasta with Sardines)
This recipe uses a sardine seasoning mix for this pasta con sarde. There are many recipes out there, but this one is easy.
1 can of Cuoco
1 large sweet onion
1/2 cup virgin olive oil
1 pound of Perciatelli #15 pasta (this pasta looks like spaghetti, but has a hole in it)
1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
salt & pepper to taste
grated parmesan cheese
-Pan fry breadcrumbs in olive oil and saute until light tan/brown.
-Boil water for pasta.
-Saute onion with olive oil and season to taste with some breadcrumbs.
-Add can of Cuoco and mix, breaking up the fish.
-Drain pasta and top with sauce.
-Top with grated paremsan cheese and more breadcrumbs.
You may not be a fan of sardines before eating this dish, but I'm sure you will feel differently when you try it!
Happy Feast of St. Joseph's Day!