Total Time
Prep 10 mins
Cook 15 mins

A lovely warming sauce; a good sinus-clearer; or just some proper traditional Italian cooking! This sauce announces itself at full volume, because of the chillies, but is also full of flavour. It is pantry food - a sauce that can be thrown together from ingredients you can keep in the cupboard for months at a time. This is the simplest recipe for it I have found, but is still delicious. When condensed down there may not seem to be much sauce, but you want to treat this like pesto - a small quantity swirled through lots of pasta, rather than drowning in sauce. If you try to split this only between two you may find it too rich.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preparation:.
  2. While retaining the oil, chop the anchovies finely, so that when included they will dissolve into the sauce.
  3. Blanch the olives by covering with cold water, bringing to the boil and draining. Then crush them with a rolling pin.
  4. Rinse the capers in water to remove the brine (or salt).
  5. The sauce:.
  6. Gently melt the onions, garlic and chillies in a generous amount of olive oil until the onions are translucent and begin to turn golden.
  7. Add the anchovy fillets, and the oil they were kept in; the olives; and the capers. Continue to cook over a medium heat for 2-3 minutes.
  8. Add the tomatoes and a small cup of water. The sauce will need cooking until the anchovies have almost dissolved away, so you may need to add more water later.
  9. Bring the sauce to the boil, and then reduce the heat and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  10. Season with salt and pepper.
  11. Serving:.
  12. This sauce is best served in a small quantity, mixed thoroughly into a pasta like fusilli that the sauce can "enter" rather than over the top like bolognese.