North Italy: Warm Anchovy Dip (Bagna Cauda)

Bagna Cauda – “warm bath” in Italian, this simple dish from the Piedmont region showcases the brilliance of Italian peasant cooking techniques. With just a few ingredients – anchovies, garlic, olives oil, and butter – crunchy fresh vegetables are taken to another level. Anchovy fillets are dissolved and mellowed in a warm butter and oil mixture with garlic added to create a warm and flavorful dip for the freshest of vegetables and chunks of crusty bread.

Bagna Cauda – Piedmont Anchovy and Garlic Dip

This simple-yet-memorable dip for vegetables is easy to prepare. Canned or bottled anchovy fillets can be found in most markets. The dip is served in shared or individual bowls and kept warm over candle heaters or hot plates- whatever works. In-season vegetables like carrots, bell peppers, celery, or green beans work great and a little crusty Italian bread for dipping never hurt anyone.
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Course: Antipasto, Dip
Cuisine: Italian, Northern Italy
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 6
Author: My Hungry Traveler

Equipment

  • Fondue pot, heated bowls
  • small saucepan

Ingredients

  • 10 Flat anchovy filets
  • ¾ cup Extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 3 tbsp Butter
  • Sea or Kosher salt

Instructions

  • Heat oil and butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Once butter is melted and beginning to foam, add in garlic for 10 seconds. Immediately reduce heat to medium-low and add anchovies. Cook 3-4 minutes mashing the anchovies until only tiny pieces remain undissolved. Season with salt and serve over a warming device with an assortment of cleaned fresh vegetables and Italian bread chunks.

Notes

  • If an even smoother sauce is desired, puree with an immersion blender or a food processor.
  • A good crispy loaf of bread makes a great dip even better.

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