Sicilian pasta with sardines

Tuck into the perfect marathon fuel with this tasty pasta and sardine dish.

Sicilian pasta with sardines

This quick and easy version of the classic Sicilian pasta dish is perfect fuel for your long runs and sardines come with a healthy dose of protein and vitamin B12.


Serves Two Prep time 10 minutes Cook time 10 minutes


  • Pasta of your choice
  • Pinch of saffron
  • Olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon fennel tops or dill
  • 2 tbsp currants or raisins
  • 1 tbsp fresh breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp pine nuts
  • 4 fresh sardines, filleted, or 1 tin of sardines


  1. Cook the pasta according to packet instructions.
  2. Meanwhile, soak the saffron in 4 tbsp hot water.
  3. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a large pan.
  4. Stir in the fennel seeds and cook for a few seconds.
  5. Add the sardines and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, breaking up the sardines with a spoon.
  6. Add the currants and the saffron with its soaking liquid.
  7. Splash in a little of the pasta cooking water, just enough to loosen the mixture to a sauce consistency. Simmer for five minutes. Test for salt and season if necessary.
  8. Toast the breadcrumbs in a dry frying pan, and set to one side.
  9. Use the same pan to toast the pine nuts.
  10. Chop the dill or fennel and stir it into the sauce.
  11. Mix in the drained pasta and serve sprinkled with crisp breadcrumbs and pine nuts.

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