Pasta Papa

Osteria Tulia's pasta con le sarde is a nod to St. Joseph, Italian Father's Day, and Sicily's harvest

Osteria Tulia’s Pasta con le sarde.
Photo by Michael Caronchi

When Sicily was hit by famine and drought, the devout population prayed to St. Joseph for rain. They were rewarded with torrential downpours that revived their crops, and their ancestors now honor the benevolent saint with a feast every March 19—which is also when Italians celebrate Father’s Day. On that date and for one week afterward, Osteria Tulia features pasta con le sarde. Along with anchovies and sardines, the Naples restaurant’s version includes homemade bucatini with onions, garlic, saffron, wild fennel, currants, pine nuts, tomatoes, pecorino cheese, and breadcrumbs. The dish serves as a reflection of Sicily’s rich bounty, an echo of its Arabic heritage, and a respectful nod to the meatless tradition of Lent.

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