Pasta Ca Nnocca

All Recipes


  • 250g Pasta Fresh Rigatoni or wholemeal cannolicchi pasta
  • 200-300g Peas
  • 1/2 a bunch Parsley roughly chopped
  • 1 x Onion finely sliced
  • 1 x tin Anchovies in Oil
  • 350g Tomato Passata
  • 200g Breadcrumbs
  • Extra Virgin Olive oil

For a Vegetarian option leave out the Anchovies and add extra seasoning

The flavours of this very particular Sicilian dish embodies the flavours of our childhood and our Grandma Strazzanti’s cooking. One mouthful of this pasta and we are transported back into that beloved time shared with our grandparents sitting all around the table together with heaps of pasta being delicately placed on our plates like a ritual.

The saltiness of the anchovies, the sweetness of the peas, the pungent fragrance of the parsley, the caramelized onions and creaminess of the tomatoes beautifully combined into one sauce and all topped with a crunch of toasted breadcrumbs which were commonly used to add texture to fish based dishes.

One mouthful of this and we are home with our Grandparents whether sat around their table in the west midlands or in our cousins home in central Sicily in Enna, thanks to the beauty of food this dish can take us home to our beloved Sicily.


In a frying pan heat up 4 tbsp’s of olive oil and fry your sliced onion until lightly golden and soft.


  • You can also use the anchovy oil to cook your onions in too just remove 2 tbsp’s of the olive oil and replace with the anchovy oil.

Once your onion is cooked add in the tin of anchovies. The anchovies will melt away into the onions and at this stage you can add in your peas, stirring well together.

After a few minutes of cooking the peas, anchovies & onions together add in your tomato passata and mix well and then add in your chopped parsley (we have given you a whole bunch of parsley so just half of this will do). Turn down the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes without a lid.

Whilst your sauce is cooking bring to the boil your water to cook the pasta and salt well.

In a separate frying pan add in your breadcrumbs and toast lightly on a low heat.


  • No oil is needed.

Occasionally stir your sauce to avoid it from sticking and add a little sea salt if needed at this stage; the anchovies are naturally salty, so you won’t need much.

Once your sauce has cooked for 15 minutes start to cook your pasta according to the manufacture’s guidelines.

Once cooked stir through the sauce for a few minutes adding a tbsp of extra virgin olive oil to finish. Serve with the breadcrumbs on top and a few fresh leaves of parsley.

Buon appetito!