Anchovies are one of those foods that are unfortunately misunderstood. Too many people hate anchovies, and while an aversion to them may be understandable, the stigma that surrounds them is undeserved.
People who claim to dislike this little fish may have simply had one bad experience. Ordering anchovies on your pizza at your local spot may have seemed courageous at the time, but it was most likely a disservice to your taste buds -- and to anchovies everywhere. The anchovies we typically find on pizzas tend to be the cheap kind that taste incredibly fishy. Dismissing anchovies as a result of some overly-fishy ones on one bad pizza is like saying you hate cheese when you have only ever tasted Cheez Whiz.
If you're basing your opinion on a one-time experience -- or even worse, having never tried them at all -- we think you ought to give anchovies a second chance. Anchovies are a powerful, potent ingredient that have been heralded for centuries. They offer an umami quality to recipes -- adding depth and complexity to many dishes. They are the secret ingredient to one of the most popular salads in the Unites States -- the Caesar salad -- and they're the X-factor in many steak sauces and beloved Italian pasta dishes. With all they have to offer, you just might want to give anchovies another try.
Here are 23 times anchovies made our recipes so much better: