A small, common forage fish of the family Engraulidid, Anchovies is an intensely salty flavoured fish. Even among the freest minded eater anchovies has a bad reputation, for its intense flavor. The reason behind such a reputation is often cheap, overly salted products. Buying good quality anchovies can be quite a task.

Anchovies in oil, a small, slender variety of fish found in the Black Sea, Pacific, Atlantic, and the Mediterranean. However, when you see them in the market or your roadside fish shop they are more likely to be preserved and treated than fresh. Salt-cured anchovy fillets packed in sunflower or olive oil are the cheapest and most readily available. They are sold in various manners most commonly in tall, thin resealable jars which is good if you only plan to use a few.

Anchovies in Oil
Anchovies in Oil

Horizontal pull tins or cans are also available, but make sure you transfer what’s left over to a sealed container and the pieces are submerged in oil, as storage in an open can will contaminate the taste. Another way you can buy them is dipped in salt. salted anchovies are meatier, firmer and sweeter, but expect to spend a good amount of time prepping them. They are usually left with their bones and fins intact so need filleting. After scraping off excess salt and washing with water, an extra soak in either milk or white wine or any other thinks liquid can help to soften them. Then comes the Less common are marinated anchovies often known by their Spanish name, which are eaten as a snack or tapas dish. They are deboned then marinated in vinegar, oil, and salt.

Uses of Anchovies:

In the western countries, anchovies, or as they call it white anchovies, and are often prepared and served in a weak vinegar marinade, a preservation technique associated with the coastal town of Collioure in southwest France. There the white fillets are often sold in heavy salt, or the more popular garlic or tomato oil and vinegar marinade packs.

They are normally sold dried but are also popularly used in fermented condiments like the Philippine bagoong and Malaysian budu. Anchovies are normally used in a similar way to dried shrimp in Malaysian cuisine. In Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Singapore anchovies are a staple and commonly used to make fish stock or are deep-fried. Anchovies are also popular ingredients for the traditional Javanese sambal.

The anchovy essentially being an oily fish, is rich in omega-3 fatty acids like many other fish variants, well known for its ability to reduce levels of triglycerides and cholesterol in your bloodstream. It is also an excellent source of protein, with a fish of average size providing around 9g of protein and only 55 calories. Hence it a great option if you are considering a fish-based protein source. It is a good source of calcium and particularly of the rare mineral selenium, a powerful and highly helpful antioxidant that is naturally scarce in many parts of the world. In recent years, concerns over the concentration of mercury in fish meat have led to recommendations limiting the number of portions of fish eaten. However, because the anchovy is a small fish with a short life span, it is unlikely to accumulate significant levels of mercury in them.

There are about 13 calories in 3grams of anchovy. With about 427 calories per 100grams, anchovies are considered a high-calorie density food. It is considerably low in carbohydrates, with moderate protein and high levels of fat. If you are following or planning to follow a strict keto diet then it is a good option to consider

  • Total calories: 13calories.
  • Serving size: about 3g.

Amount per serving-

  • Total fat:1g
  • Cholesterol:0mg
  • Sodium: 113mg
  • Total carbohydrate:0g.
  • Protein: 1g.

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