I have been eating and making Bagna Caoda since my childhood. It is an essential component of holiday meals and family gatherings from early Dec. through January. We have always had it on Christmas Eve as a hot dip for vegetables and bread made Ina fairly traditional way. That means butter and olive oil, minced anchovies, minced garlic sautéed over very low heat (30 minutes to an hour) till the garlic mellows and the anchovies dissolve to which a bit of milk or cream (usually cream) is whisked in towards the end.
My father has been eating it for about 80 years (both of his parents are from the Piedmont region of Italy so this is mother's milk on some deep level for him and it is a dish my Grandmother taught me how to make) and is endlessly inventive on what he wants it on or with. Leftovers are turned into toppings for scrambled eggs, grilled meats, pasta sauce, etc., etc., etc. There must always be leftovers. It really works with roasted cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts ( or similar vegetables that can stand up to a dish redolent with garlic and anchovies
I like to make variations on Bagna Caoda that can include an acidic component like red wine or various vinegars and made more or less "saucy" depending on what I want to do with it. Fresh herbs can totally change the character of a Bagna Caoda sauce but rosemary and/or parsley are the herbs my Piemontese background make most prevalent.
Anchovies, capers, garlic, olive oil and tuna are also natural combinations, at least to my mind, and can make the basis for sauces like tonnato sauce that accompany "Vitello Tonatto" something my father wants every summer. Cold dips/spreads to top crostini such as a tuna, anchovy, caper, olive oil, garlic and whatever herbs or spices strike your fancy can be made and pulsed through the food processor and served on crackers, crostini or scoopy vegetables like celery hearts. I like Italian oil packed tuna for most of these sort of things and I prefer salts packed anchovies and salt packed capers for most dishes but that is not a luxury I can find when I visit them in small town USA so if you have to (as Grandma did) use oil packed anchovies (I normally soak in milk then discard the milk) or capers in brine ( rinse unless the brine adds to the finished dish)' tuna packed in water ( no great fix here because I love Italian tuna in oil, drained).
Sweet red or yellow peppers, either minced to make a dip or cut into bite side wedges are also naturals that work well with anchovies. They can also make a great pasta sauce even better
I don't get anchovy dislike but I have been eating them my whole life so I am acclimated to love them
Korean Anchovy side dish -
6 oz dried anchovies
1 tablespoon blended sesame/soybean or vegetable oil
Stir fry sauce:
1 tablespoon gochujang
2 teaspoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoon water
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small spring or green onion, finely chopped
toasted/roasted sesame seed
Soak the anchovies in cold water for about fifteen minutes, then drain and pat dry.
Mix the sauce ingredients in a small bowl.
Pre-heat a medium stir fry pan on high heat then add the vegetable oil.
Reduce heat to medium and add the sauce.
Heat the sauce until it just begins to show bubbling, then add the anchovies and mix well.
Cook over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until the liquid almost disappears.
Place on serving plate and garnish with green onion and a sprinkle of sesame seed.
One of my favorites is from an old Julia Childs cookbook that she called "amuse-gueule aux anchois" -- puff pastry, brushed with dijon mustard with an anchovy filet inside. Also "gentlemen's relish" as interpreted by Suzanne Goin -- this is so good - http://foodonthebrain.net/2012/03/28/...
Yeah, I replied to you when this was still on the SD board but with a home cooked recipe... so...
used to buy the whole fresh anchovies sold at 99 Ranch on El Cajon and batter them simply (flour, beer or white wine) then fry them in EVOO and serve them with homemade allioli... close enough to the spirit of the original thread for you?
on another note, now that I've bought a 2.2 Kilo can of Agostino Recca salted anchovies, I'm freezing and saving the spines for a fried anchovy spine Catalan delicacy I've only heard rumors bout up to this point...
I love anchovies. Try and get the italian ones packed in glass jars. They tend to be less salty.
I add them to pasta sauces and stews, just one per serving but they add this Unami flavor (reduce salt)
There is a great relish I do with them for grilled lamb. Equal parts chopped anchovy, parsley, garlic & Capers. Add olive oil to taste.
Also great for Salad dressings of all sorts not just ceasar.
Even love them on wheat toast with sour cream and chives for breakfast.
There is a Filipino dish of pork made from assorted vegetables (typically tomatoes, long beans, squash, onions, bittermelon and eggplant), sauteed with ginger and braised with salted anchovies.
For my own part, I prefer the milder flavor of vinegar cured anchovies on toast with goat cheese.
Ok, this is actually pretty funny.
I posted this on the San Diego board hoping to find creative anchovy dishes in/around San Diego restaurants.
I think people mistook it as being posted on the Home Cooking board.
No worries, the replies have been fantastic and interesting. Please keep them coming! Thanks.
(Mod: you may want to move this thread as a housekeeping matter.)
I've put this out before but a favorite of mine is to soak meaty fillets in ice water forhalf-hour( you might want to change the water a couple of time) to get some salt out (thiswas originally with the head-on anchovies but filets will work), drain well, dredge in a fritter batter or beer batter, deep fry, drain with some paprika or whatever pepper you want and eat hot with ice-cold martini.
I use anchovy in vinegar as a tapa topping...layer a slice of lightly toasted baguette, a slice of hard boiled egg, top with the anchovy and drizzle with the liquid from the anchovy container. It's always a hit at our gatherings.
I also use anchovies as a flavor booster on most dishes..like spaghetti ala puttanesca (mix pasta with capers, anchovies and tomatoes).