This is a typical Sicilian recipe, from Palermo.
Ingredients for 4 servings
– “bucatini” pasta, 400g
– green cauliflower, 1 of 1kg
– onion, 1
– dried raisins, 50g
– pine nuts, 50g
– salted anchovies, 50g
– saffron, 1 bag
– extra virgin olive oil, ½ glass
– salt & pepper
Cut the tips of the cauliflower, rinse them and put them in a large bowl with water. In the meantime, bring a large amount of water to boil in a big pot with 1 or 2 tablespoons of salt. Drain the cauliflower and, as soon as the water boils, scald it for about 10 minutes.
While you wait, mince the onion and let it soften in a pot with the oil, at a low heat. It doesn’t have to brown, just let it turn translucent. Rinse the anchovies thoroughly, remove the fishbone, dry them and mince them with a knife. Add them to the onion and let them melt in the oil, crushing them with a fork. When the have melted well, add the raisins and the pine nuts, letting them roast at a high heat for about a minute.
As soon as it’s ready, drain the cauliflower with a perforated spoon, keeping the water aside. Add the cauliflower into the pan together with the onions and the anchovies. Take a cup of cooking water from the cauliflower pot, mix the saffron in it and pour over the pan. Stir well and cook until you get a creamy texture. Adjust with salt and add a touch of ground black pepper.
Bring the cauliflower water to boil and cook the pasta in it, keeping it “al dente”. Drain it, add it to the pan with the cauliflower and sauté for about a minute at a high heat. The tradition does not require it, but you can add a sprinkle of roasted bread crumbs on top.