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Can I freeze anchovy filets (in oil)?

I used 4filets from a can in my stew recipe (cooks illustrated best beef stew) and now I'm stuck with 3/4 of a can.

asked by chef of the future 2000 over 4 years ago
6 answers 12255 views
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boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added over 4 years ago

Yes indeed, I find myself in the same spot often. Pull the lid off the tin. Double-wrap the tin in plastic, and into the freezer it goes.

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added over 4 years ago

But if you don’t happen to freeze it, how long will it stay good in the olive oil? I found myself in the same situation about three weeks ago and left it in the fridge. I wonder if it’s any good. Thanks.

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boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added over 4 years ago

They won't spoil because of being submerged in oil, but I find they take on a flavor I can only describe as off, or stale.

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added over 4 years ago

Freezing is unnecessary. Any tightly closed container will allow them to keep well. For as long as 6 months

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added over 4 years ago

You can freeze, but the oil will congeal and may look unappetizing. NeuB, is right in saying you may not need to. The submersing food in fat, in this case oil, is an old way of preservation, from a time when refrigeration was not yet invented. Since air cannot get to the anchovies, bacteria will be stymied and unable to reproduce, therefore keeping them usable for much longer. If you keep them submersed in the oil and in the refrigerator, they will last for a very long time.

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pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added over 4 years ago

First I love the little critters. And most often I buy a jar of good quality flat anchovies in oil and hold them in the refrigerator. BUT what restaurants do is to buy them salt packed in large tins (and yes, there is a little cleaning work to do). Once opened you have to replenish the salt layer, cover tightly and refrigerate but not freeze.