Alici Marinate con Cipolla e Peperoncino (Marinated Anchovies with Onion and Hot Chili Pepper)

29 Jul

Marinated anchovies is a tasty, cold antipasto that can be served with homemade bread (pane casereccio) or enjoyed as a main dish with a fresh salad. The simple dressing prepared with olive oil, lemon juice and vinegar enhances the flavor of the anchovies, so reminiscent of the sea, while the onion and chili pepper make this dish even more flavorful. This is a typical Mediterranean dish, and fish is the star ingredient. Anchovies are native not only to the Mediterranean sea but are also found in the Baltic Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. They are tasty, rich in protein, iron and omega-3 fatty acids, (very important for regulating lipid metabolism and blood fluidity). You can enjoy anchovies either fresh or preserved in salt or olive oil. They are excellent for preparing sauces and, of course, on pizza – do not forget the tasty Neapolitan pizza! Marinated anchovies are something you can prepare in advance, because they keep well in the refrigerator for several days.

Preparation time: 20 min.           Marinating time: 6 hours            Servings: 4

Alici Marin
600 g (21 oz) fresh anchovies
2 cloves of garlic
1 white onion, sliced
1 hot pepper, sliced
2 lemons, juiced
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
6 tablespoons olive oil (Extra Virgin)
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. First, prepare the marinade. In a bowl mix well oil, vinegar, lemon juice and add garlic cloves, a pinch of salt and pepper
2. Clean the anchovies. Flake with a knife, remove the head, cut the anchovies open lengthwise along the belly, remove the entrails and the spine and other bones. Wash thoroughly under running water and pat dry with paper towels
3. In a large glass or ceramic bowl (see note) first pour in a layer of marinade, then a single layer of anchovies, and then sprinkle with some of the onions and peppers. Repeat this process until all of the ingredients have been used, so that the anchovies are completely covered by the marinade. Marinade for at least 6 hours in the refrigerator until the flesh of the anchovies is white and firm.

Note: When you purchase anchovies you can verify the freshness from its color; it should be bright and intense, the body should be firm. The marinade is a process during which the meat is cooked by the acids contained in the liquids used. It is important not to use aluminum or copper containers, because in contact with the acids can release toxic compounds. – Paola


4 Responses to “Alici Marinate con Cipolla e Peperoncino (Marinated Anchovies with Onion and Hot Chili Pepper)”

  1. Adri July 30, 2013 at 5:53 pm #

    Oh boy, anchovies. People either love them or hate them, at least here in the United States. I do not think any other fish elicits such strong emotions. Is it like that in Italy as well? What a classic dish – so simple and so perfectly Italian!

    • Passion and Cooking July 31, 2013 at 10:22 pm #

      I agree with you Adri people either love them or hate them in Italy too. I love them 🙂

  2. Jim Braselton August 16, 2013 at 11:30 pm #

    Do you think there is a work around if you can’t get fresh anchovies? I was looking at the Amazon website and they had anchovies that didn’t seemed to be marinated in too much of a sauce. Do you think they would work o.k. in the recipe?

    • Passion and Cooking August 17, 2013 at 10:35 pm #

      Hi Jim, I know it is difficult to find fresh anchovies there but I would recommend to use only fresh fish to prepare this recipe. The anchovies you found on Amazon website are probably marinated, therefore I would suggest to eat them just like that without any further treatment. If you want to try the authentic recipe you have to come to Italy, I will make it for you 🙂

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