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Jan 14
On the Anchovy Trail

Hamsi (Black Sea anchovies), photo by Ansel Mullins
We are unabashedly fanatical in our love of hamsi, or anchovies, a late fall/wintertime specialty whose arrival we eagerly await each year in Istanbul, where the tiny fish are most commonly served pan-fried, grilled or in pilaf. But as any hamsi aficionado knows, for the best anchovy-eating in Turkey one must go directly to their source: the country’s Black Sea coastline, where the catch is brought in. Writer-photographer duo Robyn Eckhardt and David Hagerman recently did just that, chronicling their journey in words and photos in a delightful travel piece published last month in The New York Times.

Malaysia-based Eckhardt and Hagerman, the creators of the highly regarded food blog EatingAsia, are frequent visitors to Turkey. In “A Turkish Anchovy Quest on the Black Sea,” Eckhardt describes their mission:

I was on a pilgrimage of sorts, inspired by an anchovy obsession, one shared by many Turks. For connoisseurs of hamsi, as anchovies are called in Turkish, the fat-padded specimens netted from the frigid Black Sea trump those taken from the Sea of Marmara, south of Istanbul and the Bosporus. The Black Sea season – which usually starts mid-autumn and runs through February – has been keenly anticipated for centuries.

The rest of this post can be found on, here.


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One Response to “ On the Anchovy Trail ”
  1. That is one tasty looking pile of anchovies!

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