Found in almost any Italian pantry, Anchovies or Acciugha
, are small silvery, pungent fish native to Mediterranean waters and southern European coastlines, particularly found within the Piedmont and Ligurian regions.
Anchovies are used in both their fresh and preserved forms. In America, we most often use the latter. The best quality anchovies, called acciughe sotto sale, are packed whole in salt and must be rinsed and filleted before using. But you may also find anchovies preserved, canned, packed in olive oil or used as a paste.
Finding fresh anchovies is difficult because demand is rather low and they are highly perishable. Fresh anchovies blemish very easily as their flesh is soft and bruises quite easily. But when cooked fresh, they're delightful.
Anchovies are flavorful additions to a variety of tapenades, sauces and antipasti.
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