In a Pinch: Caper, Anchovy, Mustard Sauce

With no dinner plans, and the lack of desire to do a full-on grocery store shopping, we removed a beautiful tuna steak from the freezer and then made a quick trip to the local farm nursery. There we selected freshly picked corn on the cob, a few heirloom tomatoes and an ripe avocado. Easy enough, right?

IMG_6625Make a side salad of sliced heirloom tomatoes on a bed of baby arugula and a few slices of a ripe avocado dressed with Avocado Ranch Dressing, yum!

Yet something else was needed to dress up that tuna steak and I knew we had just the right ingredients on hand to do so. You’re also likely to have most of what’s needed to throw this Caper, Anchovy, Mustard Sauce together in a pinch. It has a bright zingy flavor that pairs perfectly with grilled tuna (swordfish steaks would be a no-brainer substitute.) Any leftover sauce would be great to mix with canned tuna and used as a spread, or mix into a pasta salad.

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If you’re squeamish about anchovies, no need to worry because they are well blended into the other ingredients. Plus, hiding in the fish’s tiny briny glory are vitamins A, B-6, B-12, C, E, and K, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, and niacin, to name a few. They’re one of the most sustainable fish out there, resilient to fishing pressures with a quick reproductive cycle.

Now the big question: salt-packed or oil-packed? Oil-packed anchovies are just the filets; salt-packed anchovies are everything but the heads and tails—scales, fins, and bones are left intact and softened during the process. Salt-packed anchovies are prized by anchovy lovers for their blast of pristine fishy flavor, while oil-packed versions are slightly more subtle, though easier to eat. The salt- and oil-packed anchovies perform similarly in most uses, though the salt-packed version has a nice extra punch when eaten raw. As for anchovy paste, skip it altogether.

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On a side note, I have to give a shout-out to this Chipotle Parmesan corn-on-the-cob seasoning blend. All you have to do is shake it onto a hot ear of corn smothered in butter, or mix right into some melted butter first, then baste onto the corn. I bet it would be darn right tasty on popcorn and baked potatoes too!

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Caper, Anchovy, Mustard Sauce

  • Servings: about 1/2 cup
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon roasted garlic paste, or 1 clove coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 anchovies
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • Salt and pepper
  • Zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • A few pinches chopped snipped chives for garnish

Directions

  1. Drop the first 5 ingredients in a small food processor and pulse until well blended.
  2. Add a few pinches of salt, lemon zest, and a teaspoon of lemon juice, and pulse to combine.
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  3. Scrape the spread into a bowl, stir in the capers, and season it to taste with pepper.
  4. Spoon the mixture over grilled tuna or other seafood steaks and add a pinch of fresh chopped chives.
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http://www.lynnandruss.com

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