Recipe: Fabio Trabocchi's Bucatini with Sardines, Almonds, and Dill

 

James Beard Award winner Fabio Trabocchi of Washington, D.C.'s Fiola proves that fish from a tin has much more potential than a tuna fish sandwich in this salty, savory pasta. He infuses olive oil with garlic, then builds flavor with Espelette, chives, and tomato-packed sardines. The final result is a light yet rich sauce with layers of briny and herbal depth. Top it off with crunchy Marcona almonds and fresh dill, and you have yourself an easy pasta dinner. As always, it's important to salt the pasta water, because, as Trabocchi says, it's the only opportunity to properly season the pasta. For lighter sauces such as this one, go heavier on salting the boiling water, as opposed to the seasoning the finished dish.

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Q & A with Fiola's Fabbio Trabocchi

Fabbio Trabocchi of Fiola, nominated for the James Beard Foundation's Best New Restaurant award

 

When the Washington, D.C.-based eatery Fiola opened its doors in 2011, it was immediately met with rave reviews for its seasonally driven Italian cuisine—and now it's nominated for our Best New Restaurant award. We got in touch with chef/owner and JBF Award Winner Fabio Trabocchi to discuss what inspired him to become a chef, his favorite spring dish, and what he considers to be the best resource on authentic Italian cuisine.

 

JBF: What’s the significance of the name Fiola?
 
FT: It’s a word from an Italian dialect from the Le Marche region of Italy, which is where I’m from. It’s comparable to "sweetheart" in English.
 
JBF: What’s your favorite dish on the menu right now and why?
 
FT: Anything that involves shellfish, seafood, and spring vegetables. One of my favorite... Read more >

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