Recipe: Tomato and Anchovy Pasta


This cheap and easy pasta is packed full of flavour, and can be eaten hot or cold. It also is great for batch cooking to save time on busy days

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Image by Klaus Nielsen

By Henry Howard

Preparation time: 2 hours          Serves: 6


  • 4 tins of anchovies
  • 3 cans of whole tomatoes
  • 1 ½ white onion – half chopped finely, half roughly
  • 3 large carrots – grated
  • 6 cloves of garlic – very finely chopped or grated
  • Handful of chestnut mushrooms – finely chopped
  • 5 Cavolo Nero leaves – halved
  • Large knob of salted butter
  • Chicken stock pot cube
  • Any hot sauce (Tabasco, Siracha etc.) or chilli flakes
  • Olive oil
  • Glass of wine
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 500g tagliatelle – fresh if available


  1. Heat a large pan with a large knob of butter.
  2. Once the butter is foaming, add the onions and garlic – cook without colour.
  3. Then add the carrot, mushrooms and butter – cook briefly for 5-6 minutes over a medium or high heat.
  4. While letting the veg sweat, empty the whole tinned tomatoes into a bowl and break up with your hands (only grade A tomatoes are sold as whole rather than pre chopped, so buying whole is an easy and cheap way of ensuring the best quality of fruit, however, chopped will work too if you want to speed things up a bit).
  5. Once step 3 is complete, add in the tomatoes, wine, stock and hot sauce – add as much or little as you like.
  6. Add the anchovies without draining them, making sure that all of the oil from the tins goes into the sauce.
  7. Reduce the heat and cook uncovered for an hour.
  8. After an hour, add the Cavolo Nero leaves and cover the pan for 20 minutes.
  9. Then remove the cover and cook for another 30 minutes.
  10. Cook the pasta in salted water just before the sauce is ready – then add to sauce for a final 2 minutes over a high heat.
  11. Serve straight away with heaps of olive oil and grated parmesan or pecorino.