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Author Notes: I came across this recipe, which originates in Puglia, in an early 90?s copy of Elle Decoration -- a magazine I adored. The issue is long gone, but I have never forgotten how wonderful this sauce tasted. I can remember feeling genuinely surprised that something so simple and uncooked could have such depth of flavor. I have the anchovies to thank there. When blended like this, they have no fishy odor or taste -- they simply add a deep, satisfying undertone to a bright and summery sauce. —Selma | Selma's Table
Food52 Review: This rich, ultra-savory pesto effortlessly brightens up grilled vegetables, bean burgers, grilled or baked tofu, any kind of chicken or fish, and just about anything you'd put in a wrap. If you're worried about all those uncooked anchovies, don't be -- the roasted walnuts tone them down nicely. I expect to make this sauce often in the coming months. Great recipe! —AntoniaJames
Serves 6 to 8
- 1 cup walnuts, toasted
- 6 anchovies, preserved in oil
- 100 grams flat leaf parsley, including the stems
- 40 grams basil leaves
- 40 grams mint leaves
- 20 grams tarragon leaves
- 1 large clove of garlic
- 1 shallot
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 lemon, juiced
- Whiz the toasted nuts in a food processor until coarsely chopped. Add the anchovies, herbs, garlic, shallot, and water, and pulse until the mixture becomes a coarse purée.
- Add the olive oil and whiz until combined. Stir in 1 tablespoon of lemon juice.
- Taste and adjust the flavor, stirring in additional lemon juice, salt, and pepper to make the sauce sing.
- This sauce would be delicious slathered on fish or lamb, or tossed into hot pasta and finished with a drizzle of good extra-virgin olive oil.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Walnuts
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Recipe with Anchovies
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