The Cantabrian anchovies are a real pleasure for gourmets worldwide. True connoisseurs appreciate the excellence of these anchovies, which have become a symbol of the Cantabrian culinary tradition.

What makes the anchovies of Conservas La Rosita really special is their method of artisanal, patient and meticulous processing, handed down from generation to generation. Each step of the process is performed with dedication, giving rise to a culinary treasure that delights palates worldwide.

Today, we will tell you how we at Conserva La Rosita work the anchovies of the Cantabrico while remaining faithful to tradition, indeed our master salter who has been doing this job for more than 40 years tells you. 

The artisanal processing of Cantabrian anchovies begins with a rigorous selection of fish. Only the freshest anchovies of ideal size are chosen to guarantee the highest quality. The anchovies are carefully selected, avoiding those too large or too small, to get the right balance of flavor and texture.

Selection and maturation of anchovies

Only after selection, the anchovies are carefully washed and arranged in layers inside large barrels and for each layer the sea salt is applied, in precise quantities and proportions. This step is crucial to preserve anchovies over time and intensify their taste.

The drums are pressed with weights to remove water and then sealed. This starts a controlled fermentation process that lasts several months. During this phase, anchovies develop a unique and complex flavor, acquiring a soft and delicate texture. Maturation is one of the most critical stages of artisanal processing, as it determines the character and final taste of anchovies.

After the ripening period, the anchovies are gently extracted from the stems. With great skill, the master salters remove the head and innards, leaving only the fillet, which is washed carefully to remove excess salt. The anchovy fillets are then gently placed in special containers and covered with olive oil. This final step gives the Cantabrian anchovies in olive oil a round taste and a creamy consistency, making them ready to be enjoyed.

Anchovies in olive oil or salted

The salted anchovies, on the other hand, are processed directly into cans of 10, 5 or 2.5 kg Our master salters arrange one anchovy after another, creating several layers, each covered with a proper amount of salt. The cans are then stacked one on top of the other forming towers of about 3 meters and as for the stems also on the milk are placed weights that allow the escape of water and optimal maturation of anchovies that can last from three to six months.

The anchovies in oil and the salted ones are then labelled in their respective containers – glass jars and cans of various sizes – previously washed and dried. 

And yes, dear readers, in Conservas La Rosita, washing and drying is also strictly manual work

The artisanal processing of Cantabrico anchovies is therefore a process that requires time, experience and passion. Thanks to this dedication, these anchovies have gained international fame as authentic culinary treasures. 

Every time you taste one of these anchovies, you can appreciate the result of craftsmanship that enhances the heritage and beauty of the Cantabrian Sea, converting it into the creation of authentic gastronomic masterpieces.

If you are curious to learn more about the processing of salted anchovies and Conservas La Rosita oil, visit the page Production, where we show in detail all the steps with which we transform fresh anchovy into anchovy ready to taste, from arrival at the port to transport to your homes. 

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