Sunday, March 1, 2009

De-boning Anchovies for my Sicilian Pizza

Today I'm making homemade Sicilian Pizza with a recipe from Ciao Y'all by Damian Mandola and Johnny Carrabba. It's so fabulous but the last time I made it, I really could tell that there were anchovy bones in it. The recipe does say to debone them, but of course, I was way too lazy for that. So this time, remembering the crunch of those little bones, I decided to follow the instructions.

So I set about removing those 5000 little tiny bones inside 12 anchovies and I gotta tell ya I'll never do it again.

After the fact, I googled 'deboning anchovies' and guess what it says. YOU DON'T HAVE TO WITH CANNED ANCHOVIES. UGH. The bones are so small that you shouldn't have to. If you buy real ones or larger ones, you need to and here's how ya do it - just in case you ever decide to.

Deboning Anchovies

With a thin-bladed paring knife, halve each anchovy filet lengthwise. Gently lift out the whole bony spine using the tip of the knife, then carefully scrape away the tiny hairlike bones.
This article was first published in Saveur in Issue #38

And here's the best pizza you'll EVER have. Faccia di Vecchia (Sfinciumi) or Sicilian-Style Pizza

Sicilian-Style Pizza
Homemade or store-bought pizza dough or Bobboli for you more lazy types : )

8 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 cup small shards Pecorino Romano cheese

12 sardines, deboned and cut into small pieces

12 anchovies, cut into small pieces

2 cups canned crushed tomatoes or 2 large ripe tomatoes, chopped

1 Tablespoon roughly chopped garlic

3/4 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

liberal pinch crushed red pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Brush the pizza pan with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Stretch the dough to fit the pan. Brush evenly with 2 more teaspoons of the olive oil. In this order place ingredients onto the dough--1/2 cup cheese, sardines anchovies. Gently press them into the dough.

Continue layering the tomatoes, garlic, oregano, salt, crushed red pepper and pecorino romano cheese. Drizzle the remaining extra virgin olive oil over the top.

Bake for 30 minutes or until browned. Let cool 5 minutes and cut. Great warm or at room temp.


  1. That's why God made anchovies in a little can.

  2. Can't wait to show this to Colleen