I have taken a warm vegetable medley from Sicily called caponata di verdure and turned it into a salad, but this Sardinian recipe is not a salad transformed into a warm vegetable dish—it is actually meant to be this way. It makes a great pasta sauce with rigatoni or penne and is a perfect vegetable dish to accompany a simple broiled chicken or fish.
Cook the cauliflower in a large pot of boiling water until tender, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from the pot and cool under cold running water. Boil the broccoli if using in the boiling water until tender, about 4 minutes. Drain and cool under cold running water.
Heat the oil in a very large sauté pan over low heat. Add the garlic and anchovy and cook 2 minutes. Add the cauliflower and broccoli; cook, stirring occasionally, until warmed through, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the spinach and lemon zest with juice; cook, stirring frequently, until the spinach is wilted, about 3 minutes. Add the pine nuts and toss well. Season to taste with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the bread crumbs.
© 1998 Joyce Goldstein. All rights reserved.