Anchovy fish found mainly around the Black Sea and the Pacific and Atlantic, as well as the Mediterranean, where the best are thought to come from. They're generally around 8-10cm long and, as their delicate flavour doesn't last long after they're caught, they are rarely exported fresh. Instead, they're filleted, salt-cured and packed in oil or salt (these are particularly flavourful) in tins or jars. Preserved that way, they take on an intense but sophisticated fish flavour and are a great store cupboard standby.
Anchovies are a central ingredient in the classic British spread.Try them in salade niçoise, Caesar salad or tapanade (olive and anchovy paste); use as a pizza topping or in a putanesca sauce for pasta; mash up one or two with some butter and melt over grilled fish or lamb.