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Learning to Love the Anchovy
Finally, Luisa Weiss, who writes the food blog The Wednesday Chef, decoded anchovies for me. "I used to think anchovies were hairy little fish bombs," she says. "They would crop up on the thick-crusted pizza that my Sicilian uncle would make sometimes, filling me with dread. Or I'd see them draped over a perfectly nice salade nicoise at a cafe in Paris, contaminating all the lovely green beans and boiled potatoes beneath." Weiss eventually figured out that raw anchovies were one thing, but that if you used them in your cooking, as a seasoning, they were like a secret weapon.
To tap into the power of anchovies, Weiss melts them in some olive oil over medium heat, so they turn creamy. Then you can use the anchovy-infused oil to punch up the flavor of any number of dishes (roasted cauliflower, for example, or beef stew). "Instead of tasting like anchovies, those dishes simply taste richer, deeper, more like themselves, if you know what I mean," she says. Now, Weiss is such a fan, she even puts them on pizza, to blister in the oven. But she still doesn't eat them raw.
I'm so relieved to have found a way in to anchovies. What about you? Is there a food you just can't seem to like? Beets? Salmon? We've got 6 surprising recipes--for these and other foods you only thought you hate.
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