Savory and rich umami-flavored, you can use this creamy parsley and anchovy spread on garlic crostini to add to your appetizer menu or Mediterranean platter, flavor sandwiches or steak, to top a thick crust pizza bread, or mix it into hot pasta.
You only need a handful of simple ingredients and just 5 minutes.
Preserved oil and salt-packed anchovies can create deliciously rich, umami flavors that add a wonderful gourmet-like complexity when blended in eggs (eggs and anchovies), used as a base in my instant pot beef stew, or when emulsified into a spread or dipping sauce.
It's always a good idea to have a little can on hand because it's a handy shortcut to add big flavors, like in this recipe.
This parsley and anchovy spread is really one of my favorite simple things my grandmother used to make.
Something special happens when you blend this salty fish with fresh parsley leaves. You get a refreshing, savory kick that is toned down into a smooth paste with a touch of sour cream.
It's a great spread that quickly comes together with the simplest ingredients, but go for the highest quality of oil-packed salted anchovies you can find and rich sour cream.
Let's make it!
Ingredients & Notes
See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.
Here's what you need to make a Parsley and Anchovy Spread:
- Anchovy Fillets: The star of the show, providing a savory depth. Go for salted anchovies packed in olive oil. Don't use anchovy paste. It won't get you the same results.
- Parsley: Adds a fresh, herby note. It's the second star of this simple spread. Use only the leaves. You can use the stems to flavor your bone broth.
- Sour Cream: Its milky-rich flavor and slightly acidic tang tone down the saltiness and complement the umami flavors. It also makes this spread deliciously creamy.
- Extra virgin olive oil: You only need an extra tablespoon as most of the oil from the anchovy can is also used.
How To Make It
See the full recipe with measurements in the recipe card.
Step 1: Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until you get a beautiful, refreshing green paste. Add a tad of extra oil (but not much) if it's hard to obtain a smooth paste (optional).
Step 2: Transfer the mixture to a serving bowl. Allow it to rest at room temperature to obtain a thicker consistency.
Note: No need to add any sea salt since the saltiness of the anchovies adds plenty of flavor.
Although this recipe is so versatile, a teaspoon of this anchovy dip on homemade garlic crostini or crusty bread is my favorite way to eat it.
How To Enjoy This Italian Anchovy Spread
It can be used to flavor a variety of dishes and healthy recipes, but here are a few of my favorite ways:
- Spread on baguette slices, garlic crostini, or pita chips, like an anchovy butter.
- Use it as a dip for raw vegetables or snow peas.
- Make it part of an Italian grazing board next to your choice of vegetables and other dips, like my red bell pepper spread or Kalamata And Olive Spread.
- Flavor steak, hard-boiled eggs, or these eggs and anchovies frittata muffins for a delicious, savory flavor.
- Infuse some with hot pasta or top some on my thick-crust pizza bread for a savory bite.
In an airtight container, the parsley and anchovy spread will last in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Although not ideal, try using the blade attachment to create a smooth paste. But a small blender is better to obtain a rich and silky spread.
More Spreads Or Italian Recipes You Might Like
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Here it is, one of the simplest anchovy spread recipes that's a true celebration of Italian home cuisine and one of my favorite ways to transform this salty little fish into a flavorful spread.
Creamy Parsley And Anchovy Spread RecipeMariska Ramondino
- Place all the ingredients in a small blender.1 ½ cups packed fresh Italian parsley leaves without stems, 5 tablespoons sour cream, 1 tin oil-packed and salted anchovies, 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- Blend until you get a beautiful creamy green paste.
- Transfer to a small serving bowl or ramekin. It will look a bit liquidy at first, but let it sit for about 10 to 15 minutes to firm up.
- You can prepare this in advance and store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Before serving, allow it to acclimate to room temperature and give it a good stir.
- Only use the fresh parsley leaves. You can use the stems to flavor homemade bone broth or homemade chicken broth.
- Stir the sour cream until any liquids are well distributed before adding the recommended tablespoons to the recipe. Taste test and add one extra tablespoon if you prefer a more mild umami flavor.
- The anchovy paste will look initially quite liquidy, but it will firm up as it sits on the counter. So, allow it to rest to get a creamy and flavorful spread that tastes perfect on oven-roasted crostini bread.
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Nutrition (% Daily value)
Disclaimer: This nutritional data is calculated using third party tools and is only intended as a reference.