Charred baby gem with piquillo peppers, salted anchovies & blue cheese

Charred baby gem with piquillo peppers, salted anchovies & blue cheese

Pintxo

By
From
Basque
Serves
4
Photographer
Laura Edwards

Anchovies can come in so many different guises and I really can’t decide which is my favourite. I like to enjoy them fried with a small glass of beer or zurito, as the Basque people call it; salted just on their own with some cider; and the white ones are delicious with a local Txakoli. All of them are great, and, as you can tell, make the perfect accompaniment if you have a drink in hand, which is why they are always on the menu in any bar.

Maybe you don’t think of ‘salad’ as a pintxo, but I can assure you that using baby gem as a sort of ‘cup’ makes them the perfect finger food.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
50g piquillo peppers, drained
extra-virgin olive oil
pinch dried oregano
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 red onion, very finely sliced
2 baby gem lettuces, halved lengthways
olive oil
100g basque blue cheese or roquefort
8 salted anchovies

Method

  1. Finely slice the piquillo peppers and toss with extra-virgin olive oil, the oregano and seasoning and set aside.
  2. Put the red onion in a bowl, cover with cold water and stand for 10 minutes. Drain, pat dry and toss with a little extra-virgin olive oil and plenty of salt and pepper.
  3. Rub the cut side of the baby gem with olive oil. Heat a heavy-based pan over a high heat and cook the lettuce, cut side down, for a couple of minutes until charred. Flip over and cook for a minute more, then place on a serving plate.
  4. Top each of the charred baby gem with some of the piquillo peppers, scatter over the blue cheese and finish off each one with two anchovies. Sprinkle over the red onion and serve.
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