Spaghetti with fennel, anchovies, currants, pine nuts & capers served in a bowl

Spaghetti with fennel, anchovies, currants, pine nuts & capers

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(8 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 15 mins


Serves 4-5

Knock up a no-hassle family supper in under 30 minutes. This spaghetti dish with fennel, anchovies, currants, pine nuts and capers is salty, sweet and simple

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition: Per serving (5)

  • kcal579
  • fat23g
  • saturates2g
  • carbs73g
  • sugars12g
  • fibre7g
  • protein17g
  • salt2.1g
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  • 2 fennel bulbs
    Fennel bulb

    Fennel bulb

    Like Marmite, fennel is something that you either love or hate – its strong aniseed…

  • 400g spaghetti
  • 50ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 100g jar anchovy fillets in olive oil, roughly chopped



    Silver, slender salty little fish found mainly around the Black Sea and the Pacific and Atlantic…

  • ½ tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 70g currants, soaked in boiling water for 5 mins and drained
  • 2½ tbsp capers, rinsed
    Capers in bowl



    Capers are the small flower buds of the Capparis shrub that grows in the Mediterranean. As they…

  • 1 small pack flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked and finely chopped
  • 75g pine nuts, toasted
  • good squeeze of lemon juice


  1. Quarter the fennel bulbs. Remove the coarse outer leaves and trim the tips (cut off and reserve any fronds). Remove and discard the core from each quarter, then chop the rest of the fennel.

  2. Cook the spaghetti in a pan of boiling, lightly salted water. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large frying pan. Sauté the fennel until soft, then add the garlic and cook gently until pale gold. Add the anchovies, press with a wooden spoon, then add the chilli. When the anchovies fall apart, toss in the currants, capers, parsley and most of the pine nuts.

  3. Drain the pasta and immediately add it to the frying pan. Add the lemon juice and season to taste. Toss together, then serve straight from the pan or transfer to a large warm serving bowl. Scatter over the remaining pine nuts and any fennel fronds.

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Comments, questions and tips

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6th Jun, 2020
Big thumbs up. The addition of currants as a foil to the saltiness is genius.
8th Mar, 2019
This was something different, plus quick and easy. We halved the recipe and used a 30g tin of anchovies, it tasted quite salty but we liked that. Overall I would give it full marks but we thought a whole plate of this might be a bit too much and we served it with breaded veal. It might go well with sausages.
25th Oct, 2018
I was worried this would be super-salty because of the capers and anchovies, but the flavours come together in this completely epic way! Really quick, easy, cheap and delicious. Think this will become a weekly staple.
9th Aug, 2018
Beautiful mix of flavours! Even fennel hating boys loved it.
martin on food's picture
martin on food
2nd Jul, 2018
All round this dish surprised with many depths of flavours to enjoy. Thanks for sharing this one.
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