One of the most treasured and special ingredients of Campania is colatura di alici. Its roots date back to ancient Rome where it was known as garum. Colatura is the liquid made from aging anchovies in a controlled environment for 9 to 12 months. The resulting extract is then aged for 3 to 4 years in oak wood barrels before being filtered and bottled. Rich with the flavors of the sea and anchovy flavor.
Colatura is a versatile ingredient that adds a unique depth of flavor. A classic dish of Campania is colatura tossed with spaghetti with lightly sautéed garlic, chili flakes, olive oil, parsley and topped with toasted breadcrumbs. You can also add it to the braising liquid for lamb or beef. Substitute colatura for anchovy filets in a Caesar salad, again a small splash is all that is needed. Or orecchiette with cauliflower, garlic, chilies, raisins, and pine nuts is also enhanced by its magical properties. Also, blanched broccoli tossed with extra virgin olive oil, a small splash of colatura, red pepper flakes and toasted garlic.