Roasted Capsicum & White Anchovies on Toast
Makes 8 pieces
3 yellow capsicums (peppers)
3 red capsicums (peppers)
80 ml extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
100 g French shallots, diced
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
¼ cup caster (superfine) sugar
50 ml Cabernet Sauvignon vinegar or red wine vinegar
150 g sultanas
8 baguette slices
16 white anchovies
2 Tbsp flat-leaf (Italian) parsley leaves
Preheat the oven to 200ºC.
Place the capsicums in a roasting tin, drizzle with some extra virgin olive oil and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Bake for 15–20 minutes, or until the skins have blistered.
Place the capsicums in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow to sweat in their skins for 30 minutes. Remove the plastic wrap. Remove the seeds and membranes from the capsicums, then scrape off the skin.
Slice the flesh into thin strips and set aside.
Place a saucepan over medium heat.
Add the shallot, garlic and the 80 ml (2½ fl oz/¹⁄³ cup) olive oil and cook, without colouring, for 3–5 minutes, or until the shallot and garlic have become translucent.
Sprinkle with the sugar and stir to make a light caramel, then stir in the vinegar to deglaze the pan.
Add the capsicum strips and cook for about 3 minutes, then add the sultanas and cook for a further 3 minutes.
Remove from the heat, season to taste, then place in a bowl to keep warm.
Drizzle the baguette slices with extra virgin olive oil.
Chargrill or toast the slices, then arrange on a serving tray.
Divide the capsicum mixture among the toasts, arrange the anchovies on top and garnish with the parsley.
Drizzle with a little more olive oil and serve.
Popular in Spain and other Mediterranean regions, white anchovies (also called boquerones or gavros) are gently marinated in a vinegar mixture rather than cured in salty brine, and have a more mellow flavour and a much paler colour than regular anchovies. You’ll find them packed in tins or jars at good delicatessens and fine food stores.