bill’s anchovy pasta

First of all, I found out chef Mark Peel of Campanille will not be on Top Chef Masters tonite. Apparently they’re having just four chefs appear in each episode, and then the winners will come back for a showdown or playoff or something. I’ll be tuning in anyway. About dinner, I’d been dying to try more recipes from that new book by Bill Granger. This recipe called for a couple of different possible bitter greens, none of which I could find. So it was time to improvise.

I went with broccoli rabe (aka rapini, broccoli di rape, etc.). I knew it would be bitter enough to work, and I figured I’d just be careful to use the more tender parts of it, not the thick stalks, because there was no par-boiling to soften it first. The recipe is a total breeze to prepare — another one of those great weeknight dishes.

The secret are the anchovies. I know, not everybody likes anchovies, but I love ’em. You saute them with olive oil, garlic, and broccoli rabe, and they basically melt away. I decided to shave those really big slices of Parmesan on top for a little drama, and of course taste. What a perfect dish. If you live in the U.K. or Australia and have access to this cool book, consider yourself to be very fortunate.

42 thoughts on “bill’s anchovy pasta

  1. Are you kidding I love anchovies! They're full of nutrients and a great source of calcium. And, they're delicious. What a simple and yummy meal.p.s. my italian grandma would peel the stalks of brocolli rabe. i've never tried it, but…?

  2. michelle: I didn't realize anchovies had any health value. peeling broccoli rabe stalks seems like overkill, but maybe if it was really thick… thanks for visiting.

  3. Hey Justin, thanks so much for your comment on my blog. I have yet to try broccoli rabe, but this looks like a wonderful application of it. Just looking at your pictures is making me hungry!

  4. jenn: well, you can't buy it in america yet, so that could be toughsweta: thanks for visitingsarah: oh really? it's definitely a fun ingredient to cook withheather: thanks!yasmeen: anchovies have a very strong flavor. You can use just a few in most dishes. if you just bit into one, it would be pretty intense.

  5. Did you watch TC? I thought it was kind of boring…unlike this meal which looks great! I used to think I hated anchovies, but it turns out I really like them.

  6. Bill Granger bugs me so much – something about his overly sunny disposition and grating accent. Here in the UK you can't move in Borders without bumping into one of his books. That being said, that pasta dish does look very, very nice. I love anchovies and pasta together.

  7. esi: yes, I watched top chef and enjoyed it very much. of course it was a lot different with such experienced chefs, but I guess I know some chefs and have been to some of those restaurants, so I was curious to see what they'd do under pressure. c'mon, the frozen food and running the pasta under the shower… that was good tv.elizabeth: thanks for visitinghilary: yeah, but his recipes are great and totally work. i dig bill, but in the u.s. he's still pretty obscure

  8. OK Justin, I get the Marshmallow Fluff over Marashmallow Creme comment on my blog now! So you have a whole book devoted to Fluff, I will have to check it out. Gotta love the stuff!

  9. I love this dish from Bill! I love all of his books! The last book, I cook a lot like thattoo that is why I like it so much! Looks good,mmmmmm…

  10. robin sue: yeah, i rarely see people calling for the kraft stuff by name. fluff is what people love!pearl: me too, thanks for visitingsophie: I should get my hands on his other books too

  11. Love anchovies. Used to be apologetic about it because it seemed to be unpopular among pretty much everybody around me. But now I've learned to embrace the anchovy lover in me. No need to apologize for loving something that tastes good. 🙂 Thanks for the book recommendation.

  12. Leela: yeah, it's weird how many people find anchovies to be so unappealing. I've never understood it. I think they got a bad rap when people would put them on pizza, just the whole anchovies right on top. I actually like that, but it's really intense. But when you cook with them, it's very different.

  13. Mmmm, this looks amazing! I love rapini with pasta, but I've never thought to add anchovies before (though I love them in Ceasar dressing)…I'll have to try this–sounds really really tasty!

  14. This was appealing the moment the photo loaded unto my screen! I'm not at all averse to anchovies although I can't say that I've eaten outright. But what's not to like? And it's an integral ingredient for Caesar salad which most people seem to love. The slices of Parmesan just finish this perfectly.

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