Salsa Verde

Adapted from An Everlasting Meal

I came across this versatile, put-it-on-just-about-anything sauce at the end of the first chapter of Tamar Adler’s memoir. The chapter, entitled “How to Boil Water,” centers on how to use boiling as an effective cooking method for vegetables and meats. She uses this traditional Italian accompaniment for boiled meals. It would be great on eggs, as a final touch on soups, pasta…really anything. We loved it.

  • 1 small shallot, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Sherry vinegar
  • 1 small bunch parsley, leaves separated from stems and roughly chopped
  • 1 small clove garlic, chopped and mashed into a paste with a pinch of salt
  • 1 anchovy fillet, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon capers, drained and finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Place the shallot in a small bowl. Add the salt, then enough vinegar to cover. Allow it to sit while you prepare the rest of the ingredients, about 10 to 15 minutes. Drain the shallot of its vinegar, reserving it for another use (see tips). Mix the shallot with the chopped parsley, garlic, anchovy and olive oil. Use immediately or allow it to sit for a while at room temperature so the flavors can intensify. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to three days.
  • Tips
  • 1. You can use red or white wine vinegar, which is what Ms. Adler suggests. I happened to have sherry vinegar and thought it worked well, but use whatever you’ve got on hand.
  • 2. I resisted the urge to put this in a food processor. Yes, you could. But there is something lovely about the rough and uneven quality of this sauce when the chopping is done by hand.
  • 3. I know what you’re thinking. You’re already turning your nose up at the furry fish. Please don’t. It adds a salty quality and it’s such a small amount. It adds depth and flavor without the fishy taste. If you are just starting out with anchovy, you may want to try a paste first. I tried a little dab once, then before I knew it the tube was gone. The next time, I bought a small jar and now use them whole, one or two at a time.
  • 4. Don’t toss that vinegar! I whisked it with some oil, Dijon mustard, salt and pepper for a salad dressing the next day.
  • 5. I made this in the morning and let it sit out at room temperature for the afternoon. The flavors had time to meld and intensify. By dinner, it was superb!

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): About 1 cup

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