Anchovies are one of those foods that are unfortunately misunderstood. Too many people hate anchovies, and while an aversion to them may be understandable, the stigma that surrounds them is undeserved.
People who claim to dislike this little fish may have simply had one bad experience. Ordering anchovies on your pizza at your local spot may have seemed courageous at the time, but it was most likely a disservice to your taste buds -- and to anchovies everywhere. The anchovies we typically find on pizzas tend to be the cheap kind that taste incredibly fishy. Dismissing anchovies as a result of some overly-fishy ones on one bad pizza is like saying you hate cheese when you have only ever tasted Cheez Whiz.
If you're basing your opinion on a one-time experience -- or even worse, having never tried them at all -- we think you ought to give anchovies a second chance. Anchovies are a powerful, potent ingredient that have been heralded for centuries. They offer an umami quality to recipes -- adding depth and complexity to many dishes. They are the secret ingredient to one of the most popular salads in the Unites States -- the Caesar salad -- and they're the X-factor in many steak sauces and beloved Italian pasta dishes. With all they have to offer, you just might want to give anchovies another try.
Here are 23 times anchovies made our recipes so much better:
Grilled Romaine Salad with IPA Caesar DressingThe Beeroness
Roasted Red Pepper Pasta SauceSimply Recipes
Roasted Kale and Fennel Salad with Avocado Caesar DressingFoodieCrush
Pan-Seared Lamb Chops with Toasted Bread Crumb SalsaAlexandra Cooks
Pasta PuttanescaSimply Recipes
Radish and Escarole Salad with Anchovy Vinaigretteby Merill Stubbs from Food52
Pub Gougères with Anchovy and Cayennewithinseason from Food52
Spaghetti with Shallots, Sage, Lemons & AnchoviesLemon & Anchovies
Hanger Steak With Herb-Nut SalsaPetrina Tinslay/Food&Wine
Peri Peri Pepper-Almond Dip with Marinated AnchoviesLemons & Anchovies
Penne With CauliflowerNew Media Publishing
Italian-Sausage Burgers With Garlicky SpinachStephanie Foly/Food&Wine
Anchovy Onion Buttercookingwithleftovers from Food52
Warm Olives in Anchovy Oilleatthepeach from Food52
Baked Eggs with Potatoes and AnchoviesIchigo Shortcake
Linguine WIth Anchovy Sauce And BreadcrumbsBevCooks
Classic Caesar SaladBev Cooks
Italian Salsa Verdebell'alimento
Lamb Chops with Herbed AnchoviesThe Kitchen Inc.
Tomato Saffron Fish Stew With Anchovy PestoCook Sister
Pasta with CauliflowerSimply Recipes
New-Style Greek Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/new-style-greek-salad_n_1057601.html" target="_hplink">New-Style Greek Salad recipe</a></strong> This re-imagined Greek salad has all the familiar ingredients of the classic, like cucumbers, tomatoes, onions and olives, but what puts it over the top are the feta fritters.
The Modern Caesar Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/the-modern-caesar_n_1057560.html" target="_hplink">Modern Caesar Salad recipe</a></strong> This modern take on Caesar salad starts with a very flavorful salsa verde, which coats the salad greens as well as the pan-fried shrimp. The salad also includes French bread croutons and boiled eggs.
Warm Farro Salad With Braised Radishes
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/warm-farro-salad-with-bra_n_1058779.html" target="_hplink">Warm Farro Salad with Braised Radishes recipe</a></strong> Braising radishes in raspberry vinegar not only fixes their color a beautiful pink, it also makes them tangy and delicious. The braising liquid also becomes the dressing that tops this farro grain salad.
Grilled Lamb Salad With Cumin Vinaigrette
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/grilled-lamb-salad-with-c_n_1058452.html" target="_hplink">Grilled Lamb Salad with Cumin Vinaigrette recipe</a></strong> This Chinese-Indian fusion salad starts with a base of sliced romaine with julienned jicama, carrot and cucumber plus shredded basil and jalapeños. Tender grilled leg of lamb goes on top. It's all dressing with a honey, mustard and cumin vinaigrette.
Barley And Grilled Vegetable Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/barley-and-grilled-vegeta_n_1058222.html" target="_hplink">Barley and Grilled Vegetable Salad recipe</a></strong> Use your favorite leftover grilled vegetables (or follow our <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/vegetables-with-walnut-dr_n_1058772.html" target="_hplink">recipe</a>) to make this healthy and filling barley salad. A bit of lemon juice, chives and pecorino cheese are all you need to finish it off.
Thai Crab And Green Mango Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/thai-crab-and-green-mango_n_1058743.html" target="_hplink">Thai Crab and Green Mango Salad recipe</a></strong> This refreshing crab salad has all the flavors of Thai cuisine covered -- salty, sour, sweet, bitter and spicy. The salad is packed with pungent flavors from watercress and herbs like cilantro, basil and mint. Cucumbers and green mango add a nice crunch.
Quinoa Salad With Sugar Snap Peas
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/quinoa-salad-with-sugar-s_n_1058636.html" target="_hplink">Quinoa Salad with Sugar Snap Peas recipe</a></strong> Protein-packed quinoa cooks up exceptionally fast, making it perfect for the weeknight. Here it's combined with blanched sugar snap peas, toasted pumpkin seeds and chives for a refreshing salad that works well as a main or side dish.
Grilled Flank Steak With Corn, Tomato And Asparagus Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/grilled-flank-steak-with-_n_1058442.html" target="_hplink">Grilled Flank Steak with Corn, Tomato and Asparagus Salad recipe</a></strong> A summer salad of cherry tomatoes, sweet onion, asparagus and corn makes a nice pairing with grilled marinated flank steak and sauteed mushrooms. A honey and cider vinegar dressing brings all the flavors together.
Barley And Spinach Salad With Tofu Dressing
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/barley-and-spinach-salad-_n_1058223.html" target="_hplink">Barley and Spinach Salad with Tofu Dressing recipe</a></strong> Crumbled tofu in the sherry vinaigrette adds extra texture and protein to this salad. The fiber-rich barley is cooked in chicken stock for additional flavor and served warm with sauteed mushrooms and wilted spinach.
Chicken Salad With Zucchini, Lemon And Pine Nuts
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/chicken-salad-with-zucchi_n_1058297.html" target="_hplink">Chicken Salad with Zucchini, Lemon and Pine Nuts</a></strong> This unique salad features lemon-marinated seared chicken served with arugula and raw marinated zucchini. Dried currants and preserved lemon slivers add unique bursts of flavor.
Spinach And Shrimp Salad With Chile Dressing
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/spinach-and-shrimp-salad-_n_1058714.html" target="_hplink">Spinach and Shrimp Salad recipe</a></strong> This healthy salad of baby spinach, peas and tomatoes features a warm dressing of caramelized onion, chile, ginger, cumin and turmeric. Top it with cooked shrimp to complete your dinner.
Warm Flank Steak Salad With Mint And Cilantro
Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/warm-flank-steak-salad-wi_n_1058780.html" target="_hplink">Warm Flank Steak Salad with Mint and Cilantro recipe</a> This salad is all about the steak and pungent herbs. First you start by grilling the marinated flank steak and then stir-fry the slices with the herbs so they crispen up. The special ingredient of roasted rice powder (a Thai condiment) gives it a unique crunch.
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/cobb-salad_n_1061224.html" target="_hplink">Cobb Salad recipe</a></strong> This classic Cobb salad features poached chicken, crisp bacon, tomato, watercress, hard-boiled egg, avocado and blue cheese. For a unique twist serve it all stacked up.
Warm Lamb Salad With Fresh Herbs, Feta And Artichokes
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/warm-lamb-salad-with-fres_n_1058781.html" target="_hplink">Warm Lamb Salad with Fresh Herbs, Feta and Artichokes recipe</a></strong> This Mediterranean melange of flavors will have you imagining yourself in Greece. Leftover grilled lamb tops a mix of Bibb lettuce, cucumber, artichoke, cherry tomatoes, red onion, olives and feta.
Caesar Salad With Crispy Tofu Croutons
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/caesar-salad-with-crispy-_n_1058265.html" target="_hplink">Caesar Salad with Crispy Tofu Croutons recipe</a></strong> This Caesar salad has tofu in two forms: silken for the creamy dressing and firm for the croutons, which are fried until crispy. You still have the classic flavors of Caesar just with a healthier twist.
Grilled Green Bean Salad With Lentil Vinaigrette
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/grilled-green-bean-salad-_n_1058446.html" target="_hplink">Grilled Green Bean Salad with Lentil Vinaigrette recipe</a></strong> Forget about steaming or boiling your green beans -- grill them for better flavor. In this salad they combine with arugula, pattypan squash, crisp pancetta and a flavorful black lentil vinaigrette
Ham And Egg Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/ham-and-egg-salad_n_1057476.html" target="_hplink">Ham and Egg Salad recipe</a></strong> Feel like breakfast for dinner? Make this ham and egg salad with runny soft-boiled eggs and crisp ham slivers, served over tender lettuce and basil leaves. Drizzle with a lemon and butter dressing.
Lemony Bulgur Salad With Shrimp And Spinach
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/lemony-bulgur-salad-with-_n_1058523.html" target="_hplink">Lemony Bulgur Salad with Shrimp and Spinach recipe</a></strong> Buy cooked shrimp from the supermarket to make this recipe come together more quickly. The salad includes bulgur, baby spinach, sliced radishes and a dill-and-lemon dressing.
Warm Chicken And Rice Noodle Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/warm-chicken-and-rice-noo_n_1057527.html" target="_hplink">Warm Chicken and Rice Noodle Salad recipe</a></strong> Tender poached chicken tops this Asian-inspired salad of baby spinach, broccoli and scallion. A savory soy and balsamic vinegar dressing ties it all together.
Ginger Beef Salad
<strong>Get the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/27/ginger-beef-salad_n_1058406.html" target="_hplink">Ginger Beef Salad recipe</a></strong> Use any leftover roast beef or deli beef to make this salad in a hurry. Mixed greens, cilantro, mint and radishes combine with crisp chow mein noodles and a tangy Asian dressing to create this salad supper.
WATCH: How To Make A Poached Egg Salad
P. Allen Smith shows how to prepare a poached egg salad.