These are called Gavros by the Greeks and can be found on almost every menu that serves fish. You see people everywhere munching on these little guys particularly near the sea on a hot afternoon. I come from a place where anchovies only come in a can and usually smell like 30 year old socks. Needless to say it took a while even for me to want to put anything that most of my prairie friends considered inedible close to my mouth.
That being said, if you are not constrained by misconceptions give them a try and you will, like me, come to value and appreciate the clean lively taste that a good anchovy can provide.
What you need:
- 1/2 kilo of fresh anchovies, about 40 fish
- 1 cup of flour for dredging (more if needed)
- Pinch of paprika
- Pinch of dried mustard
- Salt and pepper
- A mix of 50% olive oil and 50% canola oil. Enough for about 1″ in your frying pan
- Pinch of coarse salt
- Wedge of lemon to squeeze on top
How it’s done:
- Gut and clean the anchovies. This is a relatively easy process. Take a small knife and cut the belly from the head to the tail. Using your finger (yes your finger) scrape the guts out under running water. Wash thoroughly and pat dry with a paper towel. Half a kilo should take you about 15 min to complete.
- Prepare your dredging mixture in a shallow bowl by combining flour, paprika, mustard, salt and fresh ground pepper.
- Heat the oil mixture.
- When oil is hot dredge each fish and fry until golden brown. This may take more than one batch.
- When done place on a paper towel to remove any excess oil.
- Sprinkle with a little coarse salt and serve immediately with a wedge of lemon to squeeze on top.