I have several recipes that call for anchovy paste; I think they're typically vinaigrettes. They don't carry the paste at Trader Joe's so I bought a small can of whole anchovies.

Can I substitute the whole (presumably chopped/smashed/pureed) for paste? I assume I would use the same volume? And for others, can paste be substituted for whole in recipes where the whole anchovy is going to be pureed anyhow?

Oh, and since I'll have leftover anchovies from the can, I assume they will freeze fine for further anchovy paste substitutions?

  • You might want to rinse the salt off of the anchovies first. Sometimes they are too salty and make your paste more salty than you want. – MandoMando Jul 19 '13 at 15:28

You can easily make your own anchovy paste from canned anchovies. This America's Test Kitchen video shows how:

  1. Chop the anchovies fairly finely
  2. Mash with a fork until smooth

Some sites recommend adding a little oil for a smoother texture.

I have never tried it, but I don't see any reason this would not freeze exceptionally well, as neither whole anchovies nor the paste are used for their texture.

  • If you've an Asian store handy, you can also buy the dried little fish, and chop them into a powder using your coffee/spice grinder. – Wayfaring Stranger Jul 17 '13 at 22:05

yes, paste is just ground anchovy... better to make your own because the paste is made from the anchovies that were not suited to be sold whole.

  • Not suited to be sold whole might just mean they're, well, not whole. Nothing wrong with making paste out of little bits instead of wasting them. – Cascabel Jul 20 '13 at 0:10

The paste is just ground up anchovies. I use a mortar and pestle to make it.

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