Our Provençal anchovy dip gets its velvety texture from boiled and pureed almonds.
Provençal-Style Anchovy Dip
MAKES about 1½ cups
WHY THIS RECIPE WORKS A Provençal favorite, anchoïade is a potently flavorful mixture of anchovies, olive oil, and garlic that can be spread on toast or used as a dip for vegetables. But many versions of this puree can be unappealingly oily or overrun with unnecessary ingredients that drown out the anchovy flavor. To make a smooth, anchovy-rich dip, we started by creating a creamy, neutral-flavored base with another ingredient typical of Provence: almonds. When boiled and pureed, the nuts took on a smooth consistency that helped to keep our dip cohesive and provided richness without being greasy. We discovered that boiling and then rinsing the blanched almonds ensured that the dip wouldn’t turn out grainy. We added the anchovy fillets to the softened almonds, along with raisins for subtle sweetness and a few savory ingredients to round out the flavor. Because extra-virgin olive oil can become bitter if overprocessed, we waited until the dip was mostly smooth before slowly drizzling in the oil. Fresh chives and a final drizzle of olive oil were all this dip needed for a refined presentation to match its sophisticated anchovy flavor. Our favorite brand of anchovies is King Oscar Anchovies—Flat Fillets in Olive Oil. Serve with Olive Oil–Sea Salt Pita Chips , slices of toasted baguette, or raw vegetables.
¾ cup whole blanched almonds
20 anchovy fillets (1½ ounces), rinsed, patted dry, and minced
¼ cup water
2 tablespoons raisins
2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus extra for serving
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving
1 tablespoon minced fresh chives
1. Bring 4 cups water to boil in medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add almonds and cook until softened, about 20 minutes. Drain and rinse well.
2. Process drained almonds, anchovies, water, raisins, lemon juice, garlic, mustard, ¼ teaspoon pepper, and ⅛ teaspoon salt in food processor to mostly smooth paste, about 2 minutes, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. With processor running, slowly add oil and process to smooth puree, about 2 minutes.
3. Transfer mixture to bowl, stir in 2 teaspoons chives, and season with salt and extra lemon juice to taste. (Dip can be refrigerated for up to 2 days; bring to room temperature before serving.) Sprinkle with remaining 1 teaspoon chives and drizzle with extra oil to taste before serving.