Monday, November 28, 2011

Things to make with cans: Anchovy and lemon pasta

You either love anchovies or hate them. Kevin and I love them; Zach puts them in the same category as dry fish or (gasp) prawn balchao. But even he could find no fault with this pasta, adapted from a quick-fix recipe from BBC Good Food Magazine (UK).
This makes a subtle, slightly sophisticated pasta dish. In fact, it was with this recipe that we discovered how delicious plain pasta can be with just the right amounts of salt, olive oil and lemon juice – even before you add the saucy element (in this case, the anchovy breadcrumbs).


  • 400 g pasta, cooked (we broke spaghetti into three parts for easy eating)
  • 1 can anchovies in olive oil (we used the flat John west tin, Rs 125 from Gourmet West)
  • 6 cloves garlic, crushed
  • Fresh breadcrumbs (made by crumbling four slices of fresh bread)
  • Zest and juice of a lemon
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
  • Handful parsley leaves, finely chopped
Boil the pasta with enough salt, drain, leaving a little water in the bottom of the vessel to keep it from drying out.
Drain the oil from the anchovy can into a frying pan. Chop the anchovies into little pieces (our John West anchovies are always an indistinct mass though) and add to the pan along with the crushed garlic. Allow the anchovies and garlic to infuse the oil, stirring all the time. Add the fresh breadcrumbs and the zest of the lemon and stir till the breadcrumbs are golden brown (add a little olive oil if needed). The breadcrumbs must absorb the oil, anchovies and garlic. Take off the heat and set aside.
Toss the drained pasta with 1 to 2 tbsp olive oil and the juice of the lemon.  Stir the breadcrumbs mixture through. Add the parsley and serve hot.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds Yummy. I like a tuna, tomato, and chilli pasta sauce with anchovies too. Pretty rich though. Love Vaneeta


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