"I wasn't lying when I said the Sardinians love deep frying. Deep frying the peppers here means they become deliciously soft, silky and sweet, but you can achieve a similar result if you roast them slowly in the oven with lots of olive oil," says cookbook author Letitia Clarke.

Deep-fried peppers with anchovies and capers recipe

Deep-fried peppers with anchovies and capers recipe

"They are addictively good. You can make them the day ahead and they are even better. In fact, they must sit for a few hours for the flavours to mellow and develop. The anchovy, vinegar and capers make a wonderfully piquant dressing to foil the sweetness. Serve at room temperature, with plenty of crusty bread and some shards of salty pecorino cheese."

Deep-fried peppers with anchovies and capers recipe from Bitter Honey by Letitia Clark


(Serves 4-6)

500ml olive oil, for frying, plus extra for drizzling

3 large red peppers, deseeded and cut into eighths lengthways

8 anchovy fillets, torn lengthways

1tbsp capers

1tbsp red wine vinegar

Sea salt

A few basil leaves, to serve

fried peppers from Bitter Honey by Letitia Clark (Matt Russell/PA)


1. In a frying pan over a medium heat, warm the olive oil and then fry the pieces of pepper until they are completely soft and just beginning to take colour. Remove and drain well on kitchen paper.

2. Heap the peppers into a mixing bowl and stir through the anchovies, capers and vinegar. Taste for seasoning. They shouldn't need salt as the anchovies are salty but if they are insipid, then add a pinch.

3. Stir well and leave to sit for at least one hour – even better, three to four hours. Serve at room temperature, scattered with some fresh basil and drizzled with your best oil.

Bitter Honey by Letitia Clark, photography by Matt Russell, is published by Hardie Grant, priced GBP 26. Available now.