Anchovies, anchovies, anchovies. You’re either cringing or jumping for joy. Anchovies get a bad rap. A very bad rap. The first time we made a dish with anchovies was last December. It was a surprisingly delicious anchovy rosemary sauce over scallops. Who knows why cravings hit sometimes, but anchovies were calling, so we wanted to give them another chance. This savory dish’s sauce is a play off a classic Provençal anchoïade–a spread for crusty bread or vegetables. Though it may shock you a bit that folks are eating this stuff in such an unadulterated form, we think once you taste it, you’ll be licking your spoon.
If you give this a try, please do not confuse anchovies with sardines. They are in no way alike, which was something we learned the hard way a while ago when Chrystal accidentally picked up a big ‘ol can of ‘dines instead of the tiny can of anchovies. Here’s a side story for you: We were testing these sweet and savory olive tapenade type pinwheel appetizers. In went all of the ingredients for the tapenade, including these huge canned fillets. Something about the addition was, well…fishy. It wasn’t until we tasted the final product that we realized the faux pas. Needless to say, those ‘lil pinwheels were tardy for the party. Learn from our silly mistakes! Give this anchovy sauce a try. You can smother lamb, chicken, beef or fish with it. Or go veggie style and spread over couscous or orzo. You’ll have no regrets!
Chicken Pasta with Anchovy Rosemary Sauce – Serves 4
1/2 pound spaghetti
1 pound chicken breast, cubed
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
6 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
4 tablespoons fresh rosemary
2 ounces anchovies, in oil
3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for cooking
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1. Place garlic, anchovies (with their oil), rosemary and lemon juice in a food processor. Blend until fairly smooth. Add lemon juice followed by olive oil and continue to blend until smooth. Cover and set aside.
2. Season chicken with red pepper flakes, poultry seasoning and a pinch of kosher salt. Set aside.
3. Start a pot of water boiling for the pasta. Add a pinch of salt. Once boiling, cook pasta to desired doneness, approximately 6-9 minutes for al dente.
4. As pasta cooks, drizzle a bit of olive oil in a wide pan. When hot, add the chicken and cook until no longer pink inside, approximately 5-7 minutes.
5. Drain pasta and drop the noodles directly into the pan with the chicken. Add anchovy sauce and toss to coat. Sprinkle with fresh parsley if desired.
Click HERE for the printable recipe.
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