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Recipe: Baked anchovies

Written by:
Written by:
Recipe: Baked anchovies

Serves 4
Preparation time: 40 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour

1.5kg anchovies, sardines or other small fish
150ml olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
4 large onions, sliced
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
120g chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper
2tbs tomato paste
4tbs dry white wine
3 thin lemon slices, rind removed
2 large ripe tomatoes, thinly sliced

Pinch the head of an anchovy between your thumb and forefinger and pull it off – the guts should come away with it. Pinch all along the top edge of the fish and pull out the backbone – it should come away easily. Repeat with the remaining anchovies.

If using other small fish, scale them by running one hand from tail to head,  holding the fish by the tail under cold running water.

Alternatively, put them into cold water to cover and rub them to remove the scales. Cut off and discard the heads.

To remove the guts, gently squeeze the belly, hold down the guts with a knife as they are exposed, and pull them out. Rinse the fish thoroughly and drain well.

Preheat the oven to 200°C. Heat the oil in a pan. Add the onions and garlic and  cook over a low heat for 5 minutes, until softened.

Remove from the heat, add the parsley, and season with salt and pepper.  Combine the tomato paste and wine in a bowl and add to the pan.

Place the fish in two rows in an ovenproof dish with some of the sauce and the  lemon slices in between. Pour the remaining sauce over the fish and top with the tomato slices. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with a little olive oil.

Bake for 1 hour, or until the sauce has reduced. Serve hot or at room  temperature.

Recipe taken from Greece: the Cookbook by Vefa Alexiadou
Photographs by Edward Park

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