Anchovy, lemon, chili and rocket pasta

anchovy pasta

Two months ago, I enjoyed a rejuvenating trip to Bali on my own, leaving my two jumping beans at home with the hubby. I stayed at the stunning Mulia Resort, and ate like a queen. One of the dishes that left a lasting impression on me was a beef tenderloin drenched in a delicious bagna cauda sauce at Soleil, their fine-dining Pan-Asian restaurant. During dinner, the affable and talented Executive Chef, Corky O’Connor, came over for a chat, and apart from me gushing about that sauce, we discussed our love for anchovies (especially in pasta).

ortiz anchovies

He asked how I usually prepared my pasta, and I said “saute garlic, anchovies, lemon zest and chili in olive oil, add the cooked pasta and water, wilt some rocket over, and eat.” He thought for a moment and said the only thing he would do different is not to cook the anchovies together with the other ingredients in the oil. Instead, add them only when I toss in the cooked pasta. So the fillets get warmed through, and gently break apart, as opposed to disintegrating completely. I tried it when I got home, and I could taste the difference. The anchovies are definitely more present, and there is somehow a deeper savouriness to the dish. The zingy lemon, chili and peppery rocket are crucial in here, because they really balance out the strong flavour of the fish. All I need for a perfect lunch is a bowlful of this pasta, with a crisp glass of white wine. Bon appétit!

About Dawn Chia

Dawn, a lanky food-crazed lady, started out writing for lifestyle magazines, and later spent several years in banking. When not eating, she's cooking, reading about, hankering after, and writing about food. On her first date with her boyfriend (now husband), they dined at four restaurants across Singapore. He's gained 25lbs since, and their culinary escapades continue after welcoming two rotund angels. Dawn's committed to feeding them with the best, and creating lasting food memories and traditions for her family.