This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.
- 1 can anchovies or sardines packed in oil
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup leeks, diced (white part only, cleaned of all sand)
- ½ pound fennel finely sliced (see note), white bulb only, core removed. (Save fronds for garnish.)
- 2 tablespoons fresh garlic, minced
- ¼ teaspoon red chili flakes
- ¼ cup vermouth or dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (zest used in topping below)
- 1 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes
- 12 ounces dry pasta of choice (we used cellentani)
- ½ cup bread crumbs
- ½ cup pine nuts
- Zest from one lemon
- ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Drain oil from anchovy or sardine can into a large sauté pan. Add olive oil and heat over medium heat.
- Add leeks, fennel, garlic and chili flakes and cook for five minutes.
- Add anchovies or sardines and cook to break up fish into mixture.
- Add vermouth and cook for one minute.
- Add lemon juice and tomatoes and lower to a simmer. Cook just until vegetables are tender, about five minutes. Remove from heat.
- While vegetables are cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta to just slightly under cooked. It should still have a bite to it.
- While pasta is cooking, place bread crumbs and pine nuts into a small dry sauté pan and over medium heat, cook for about five minutes or more until bread crumbs are nicely toasted. Remove to a bowl and stir in lemon zest and Parmesan. Set aside.
- Once pasta is ready, ladle out one cup of pasta water into the pan with the vegetables and return to medium high heat. Once bubbly, add cooked drained pasta and cook until pasta is tender.
- Add half of the toasted bread crumbs to the mixture. This will get absorbed by the liquid in the pan and coat the pasta.
- Pour into bowls and top with the remaining toasted bread crumb mixture and garnish with fennel fronds.
Last Step! Please leave a review and rating letting us know how you liked this recipe! This helps our business thrive & continue providing free recipes.