Team Eats: PALERMO – Penne alla Palermitana-ish

This recipe was submitted and cooked by special guest-chef Pablo Giles. Follow him on Twitter @PabloGilesR.

Cooking is one of the three C´s that make my day, every day. The other being Cine (Film) and Calcio. Hello, I am Pablo Giles, former myjuventus.net writer and BWRAO regular. Searching books as well as the web, I came to realize that there obviously are more than one versions to this recipe. However, I chose this one when I found out that there were some sort of parmigiano/breadcrumb thingies going on. That was just too much for me to ignore.

So anyways, this recipe combines a few things from a couple of other ones I found, but fear not, the result is indeed palate-pleasing. Allora

Penne alla Palermitana..ish (´cause I didn’t actually find an irrevocable name to it)



• Penne pasta
• 1/4 cup breadcrumbs.
• 1/3 cup parmigiano cheese.
• 1 tbsp. butter.
• 1/2 cup pignoli nuts.
• 1 tin anchovies (40g.-50g.)
• 100g. sun-dried tomatoes.
• 3/4 cup Cerignola/Sicilian olives.
• Olive oil
• Salt


1. Cook the penne pasta in a pot. Meanwhile…

2. Set the butter and trickle some olive oil into a pan and let it heat a bit without letting the butter burn. Combine the breadcrumbs with the parmigiano cheese into a bowl and mix. Add the mixture into the pan and stir. The cheese will melt and form clusters with the bread. Try to separate the mixture into separate clusters. Fear not if the clusters are too big, just toss the whole thing back into the bowl and set aside for now.

I discovered that making your own breadcrumbs is much better than the one at the store: just get some day-old piece of bread and grate away. Also remember to grate the cheese into little bits, as opposed to long strips. This will help with an easier formation of the clusters.

3. Pignoli nuts are delicious, gourmet little things. If you managed to get the yellow ones it’s all right, but the pink ones work better. Pour another trickle of olive oil into the pan at medium heat and then add the pignoli nuts. Stir continuously and DO NOT move your ass from the stove. As gourmet as pignoli nuts go, they also like to frustrate us with their fabulous ability to SUDDENLY BURN. It’s like “Ohh look they’re starting to change colour from pink to a very subtle yell-” Boom! They’re burnt… So keep stirring and wait carefully for that golden-brown shade. When achieved, set aside on some absorbing paper. The picture depicts the change of colour from natural to cooked pignoli.

4. Slice the sun-dried tomatoes into halves. This will help some more of the essence and juices to come out, while it make for more possibilities of finding a tomato on each scoop. The 100g. should roughly be some 12-13 tomatoes. Add to the same hot pan where the pignoli was cooked, and where some of the oil remains, still at medium heat. Stir for a while and then add the anchovies. Move the mixture around until the anchovies begin to disintegrate. The oil from both ingredients will make for a liquidy base. Let the stuff cook there.

5. Add 1/2 cup of the pasta water to the mixture. The starch in the pasta water will make the sauce thicker and smoother. As for the olives, I used the ones I found on the supermarket. I believe they are Cerignola olives, which are medium sized and range in colour between green and purple. Coarsely chop them and add them to the pan. Mix everything and let it cook for a while.

6. When pasta is ready, drain it and add it to the sauce. Add the pignoli and stir everything to coat. Remember the cheese clusters? Sure you do. Get them out and check their temperature. They are now cold and much easier to break down into mini-bits. Seve pasta into individual plates and sprinkle the cheese clusters like regular parmigiano cheese, only this is breaded, and breaded stuff rules.

7. Consume. Can we make it 31 this week?


I hope you enjoyed the recipe and that you might give it a go. The job is definitely worth the while (as well as the self-control of not munching on the cheese clusters while cooking!)

Fino alla Fine,
Pablo Giles


Back by popular demand, TeamEATS is a culinary guide to cooking and consuming the opposition. Each week, we pick a recipe from the home cuisine of Juve’s upcoming adversary, put on the kitchen apron and… cook it and eat it. Buon Appetito!


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