Monday, 3 December 2007

Anchovies and Extra Cheese

All this 'trying to empty the freezer' lark has a down side. Forgetting to defrost anything means that you're on your own with the contents of the storecupboard and fridge. Luckily, our vegetabkle box brings a wealth of opportunities with it each week and combined with a few basics we had a very good meal tonight. As we had everything, bar the bacon, in the house to cook my Potato and Bacon Layer, I decided to try something a little different and use anchovies instead. Now, before you start with the "I don't like anchovies" stuff, have you actually tasted one? I've converted several people to these salty, melting little fillets after they've admitted that they've never tried them because they don't think they'll like them. In fact, in this bake, you hardly taste them; it's certainly not 'fishy', just nicely savoury.

All I did was replace the bacon in my usual recipe with a can's-worth of anchovy fillets. Don't waste the oil; use it to brush the inside of the dish, rather than butter. I added some chopped rosemary and plenty of black pepper, but no salt (anchovies really are quite salty enough) and used créme fraîche instead of the cream because there was a tub in the fridge that needed using up. I used rather more cheese than I generally do, because I was nattering to Karl and got carried away with grating it over the dish.

It was very tasty - no leftovers - and great with the steamed broccoli I served a s a side dish (anchovies and broccoli are a fab combination, to my mind). With hindsight, I should have stuck with double cream though, as the créme fraîche didn't amalgamate with the other cooking juices too well and ended up a bit watery. A minor problem, however; just stick with the cream next time, methinks.

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