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Last But Not Least, The Moroccan Anchovy

January 14, 2011

Today we introduce to you the Moroccan anchovy, one of two fish that Crown Prince sources from the Kingdom of Morocco. (If you haven’t already, check out our previous post on Moroccan sardines.)

Copyright (c) 123RF Stock PhotosThese tiny silver fish rarely grow longer than four inches and just as rarely travel below a depth of 200 feet. Swimming in large groups, they live in the Mediterranean Sea and along the Atlantic coasts of Europe and Northern Africa. Anchovies feed on tiny organisms in the water, and in turn they’re eaten by a wide variety of predatory fishes—and humans, of course!

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How We Eat Them

If you’re a Crown Prince customer, the anchovies you’re eating are the European anchovy Engraulis encrasicolus, wild caught off the shores of Morocco and processed by hand.

Hand-Packed Anchovies (Photo by Dustan Hoffman)

Hand-Packed Anchovies (Photo by Dustan Hoffman)

These little fish reach your kitchen in one of three forms:

  • Flat Anchovies in Olive Oil (or Crown Prince Natural Fillets of Anchovies in Olive Oil): Cured with sea salt and hand-packed in pure olive oil, these Kosher-certified anchovy fillets are firm and flavorful.
  • Rolled Anchovies with Capers in Olive Oil: Also prepared with sea salt and pure olive oil, these anchovies are rolled by hand around tiny capers before packing – a true Mediterranean treat.
  • Anchovy Paste: After curing, some of our anchovies are processed with olive oil into a well-balanced and tasty anchovy paste. Use it in savory butters, pizzas, sauces and salad dressings.

Anchovies (Photo by Lisa Sabatino / Crown Prince)

Anchovies (Photo by Lisa Sabatino / Crown Prince)

The Anchovy’s Unique Journey

Did you know that anchovies are the only Crown Prince product to be cured rather than cooked? In fact, fresh-caught anchovies are bitter and not so tasty. Salt curing is the oldest form of food preservation we have, and it does much to improve the taste and texture of anchovies.

Before curing, our anchovies are bled, beheaded and washed with water and salt. They’re then layered with sea salt in large barrels, where they’re cured slowly over a period of months until they’re just right.

The anchovies are hand-trimmed and washed again before going through a drying process using a centrifuge. Once they’ve bid adieu to excess moisture, our anchovies are separated by size to be skinned, de-boned and de-finned, if you will. They’re then packed in high-quality olive oil and sent on their merry way.

There’s no wrong way to eat an anchovy, but we recommend pizzas, salads, appetizers and dressings for starters. Check out our very own Crown Prince anchovy recipes.

Pictured: Bruschetta with Anchovies and Tuna Salad Nicoise (Photos by Lisa Sabatino / Crown Prince)

Pictured: Bruschetta with Anchovies and Tuna Salad Nicoise (Photos by Lisa Sabatino / Crown Prince)

If you like what you’re reading on the Crown Prince Seafood blog, please come back often. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, or contact us directly. We look forward to hearing from you.

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2 Comments leave one →
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