Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Seven Fish Dishes: Bagna Cauda

We're keeping up with the Seven Fish Dishes, for Christmas Eve. If you're curious, the menu is here -- and it's full of recipes that are either easy to make, or can be made ahead. We don't have much time on Christmas Eve -- the Brick and I generally are pegged to sing, play piano/keyboard or both for our church services. If I have a few dishes done ahead of time, it's easy to put them out, uncork a bottle of wine, and talk to our guests as they hang out in the kitchen. If I'm lucky, I can even get them to chop celery, or shell a pound of shrimp while they're waiting.

Today's dish:  Bagna Cauda, a garlicky dip, rich with anchovies. The name comes from its native Italy (figures, huh), and means, in Piedmont dialect, "hot dip" or "hot bath." Similar dishes are served in Argentina and Mexico, as well.
     I bought dried anchovies during our recent trip to Puerto Vallarta; they should also be available in Hispanic stores. Or substitute a tin of anchovies, if you like.

Anchovies, in the flesh. (Or scales.) In Michigan, we called these smelt.

Bagna Cauda is easily made up to a day beforehand, and stored in the fridge until ready for use. (Garnish it with sliced red peppers for a festive look.) Serve with fresh vegetables, crackers or crusty French bread to scoop up its garlicky goodness.

(our version is via; go here for the full post.)

  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 12 anchovy fillets   (or 1 cup dried anchovies)
  • 6 large garlic cloves, chopped
Whir all ingredients together in a blender; cook 15 min. over low heat, stirring frequently. (May be refrigerated at this point.) Serve warm, in either a slow cooker or over a heater.

"Bagna Cauda a la ChampaquĆ­ 019" by Fernando Lopez Anido - Own work. Licensed under GFDL via Commons (Wikipedia0

Tomorrow:  Salmon with Wasabi Salsa Verde

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