pintxoak etxean: anchovy fennel toasts

Today's a recipe day...and the recipe du jour is a snack for anytime you have some incredible anchovies on hand. This happens to me more often than it used to, now that Itsas Mendi began to stock their perfect, perfect anchovies at a wine store around the corner from my apartment.

When some friends came over for dinner last week, I decided to make a little snack that came together in the typical slapdash fashion.  Some fresh fennel I had bought lay unused, replaced by some surprise okra from the African store down the street. But you don't just let fresh fennel go to waste, especially not as it's on the Marti's Most Wanted List for Produce Not Usually Found in San Sebastián.  A little cabinet rummaging, and it turns out crunchy, marinated fennel is the perfect accompaniment to a salty, rich anchovy.

anchovy fennel toasts (tostas de hinojo y anchoa)

  • crusty bread, sliced and toasted
  • anchovies. and i mean good ones.
  • 1/2 a fresh fennel bulb, diced
  • 3 TBSP white wine vinegar
  • 2 TBSP lemon juice
  • fronds from the fennel bulb

Marinate the diced fennel immediately in the vinegar and lemon juice.

When ready to serve, top one bread slice with an anchovy or two, then a generous, juicy pinch of fennel. Top with some fronds, and if desired a bit of cracked black pepper.