Balena srl

Only a perfect raw material can yield Balena anchovy paste …

The anchovy is a pelagic, or ocean fish: it does not live in any specific part of the sea, it migrates as the seasons change: in the deep open seas during winter, and closer to the surface and the coast in spring.

The anchovy is also a gregarious fish that lives and moves in huge groups called “schools” consisting of individuals of the same species. They swim in almost perfect coordination, so that their development and movements are truly fascinating – almost hypnotic.

Anchovies live in nearly all the saltwater seas, but the finest and most noble, the queen of all anchovies is definitely Engraulis encrasicolus. It lives in the Mediterranean Sea and in the Cantabrian Sea off the northern coast of Spain. Those waters, along with the unique climate and the plankton allow the anchovies to acquire a very special and fine flavour, exactly the features that characterize Balena anchovy paste.

Salting anchovies is the long conservation process that begins when the cleaned fish is put into direct contact with salt to give the anchovies the right concentration of saltiness.

This very old and completely artisan method involves placing alternating layers of fish and salt in a tin tub or drum and putting weights on top. The constant and uniform pressure allows the salt to penetrate the fibres of the meat, thereby eliminating water and fat.

Only when the anchovies have reached the right level of seasoning can they be used to make “Balena” anchovy paste.
Balena srl