Poulet aux Anchois (Chicken with Anchovy Sauce)

Servings: 4

Preparation time: 60 minutes

Anchovies have acquired a bad reputation in the US, the result of many pizza joints using abysmal quality. Coming from the hot pizza oven they are just horribly dry and salty. The complex taste of a good quality anchovies got lost. It’s different in Europe though. Buy anchovies in a jar or from your fish monger and you will not be disappointed. The simplicity of this dish and its great taste relies entirely on the quality of the anchovies, don’t even try to use the cheap, canned supermarket variety.

I prepared this dish for a light dinner accompanied by Tomates a la Antiboise, stuffed tomatoes Antibes style.


  • 1 cut up chicken
  • 4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium-size onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup (240 ml) dry white wine
  • 1 cup (240 ml) chicken stock
  • 1 tsp dry oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

Anchovy Sauce:

  • 4 anchovy fillets, run briefly under cold water and set to dry on paper towels
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) white wine vinegar with an acidity of 5%


Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).

Heat olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken pieces side by side. If necessary do it in batches. Cook pieces until they are nicely brown about 5 minutes. Turn pieces and cook on the other side for 3 minutes further. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer pieces to a baking dish and bake them for about 45 minutes or until juices run clear.

In the meantime, heat the skillet over medium heat and add the chopped onion stirring and scraping the nice brown bits from the skillet bottom. Add the wine and reduce to half scraping constantly. Add the stock. By now, you should have a nice brown sauce. Lower the heat to a simmer and add the garlic and anchovies filets. Stir until anchovies disintegrate. Add the vinegar and taste for seasoning. Pour anchovies sauce over the chicken and serve with plenty of bread to mop up the sauce or with a side of vegetables.

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