Linguine with pilchards, raisins, pinenuts and silverbeet
( SERVES 4 )
This is a vibrant dish packed with flavour. Soak the raisins to remove excess sugar, as you don't want them to be too sweet. If fresh pilchards aren't available, use tinned sardines in olive oil. I do not use parmesan cheese on the finished pasta, as the flavour is not required.
- If using fresh pilchards, snap off the heads, pulling out the gut as you do. Remove the back fin by grabbing the tail end and pulling toward the head. Open the fish flat, exposing the spine, then work it loose using your thumbnail. Lift the spine, pulling it away from the body and down towards the tail so that it pulls out the small bones, taking the tail with it. Wash the fillets under gently running water. Lay the fillets on kitchen paper.
- Wash the silverbeet in cold water, then trim off and discard the white stalks. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil, then cook the greens for 6 minutes. Drain the greens using a slotted spoon (the water can be used to cook the pasta), then allow to cool before squeezing out excess water and roughly chopping them.
- Heat a saucepan, add 50ml of olive oil and the onion, and cook until translucent. Stir in the silverbeet, cook for 5 minutes, then add the raisins and pinenuts and cook over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Heat a frying pan over a high heat, then add the remaining oil. Place the fillets in the pan, then cook for a minute on each side. Season with pepper.
- Toss the silverbeet through the cooked pasta, then add the fillets, breaking them up slightly as you toss.