Angel Hair Pasta with Caper Anchovy Pesto

This is the best anchovy pasta dish I have ever prepared or perhaps ever eaten. Always enthusiastic to learn new pasta and fish dishes, as I read Joan’s Caper Pesto (Pesti di Caperi) recipe I knew it would become, in some variety, a part of our Seven Fishes holiday tradition.

Caper Anchovy Pesto

4 ounces (2/3 cup) Salted Capers, rinsed well
2 anchovy fillets
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup loosely packed parsley
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 tablespoon white or red wine vinegar
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil

I decided to omit the wine vinegar since the capers were packed in vinegar rather than salted. These will need to be drained when preparing the pesto. The red pepper was nixed due to a mixed crowd, mixed being kids and the anti-Italian diners.  Preparing a rather large amount of pasta, I knew the “eye ball” method was in order. I used the remaining ingredients as written, estimating the amounts while keeping them proportionate to the original recipe. In retrospect, this is the true Foodalogue cooking fashion, a bit of this and a dash of that, no measuring required.

Angel Hair Pasta
Olive Oil
One small onion chopped fine
Caper Anchovy Pesto

As the pasta was cooking, I began to heat enough olive oil to more than coat the pasta. I had about half cup or so of finely chopped onion ready to go. The pesto ingredients went into the processor. After a few pulses, a creative foodie wave overcame the whole process, inspiring a chunky style pesto. The mixture was chunky, its consistency a bit thinner than a traditional pesto. At this point, the onion went into the hot, but not smoking, oil and cooked until translucent. The pasta was then set to drain. Into the olive oil and cooked onion went the pesto plus a few more canned anchovy filets. Stir to heat and incorporate flavors. Plate drained angel hair pasta, pour sauce over, toss, and serve. Serve up fresh grated Romano cheese and those crushed red peppers on the side.

The whole process couldn’t have taken more than 15 minutes. This was the best tasting pasta on the table in my opinion. In fact, those who don’t normally eat the anchovy and capers dish enjoyed this one. Thanks for the inspiration Joan!

See that beautiful, authentic Japanese dish in the photo, it was a gift from my brother when he was stationed in Japan. Kind of ironic to be serving Italian in a Japanese dish. And don't you all laugh at my plastic pasta server in combination with that beautiful dish either, only I can do that!

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