A traditional Piemontese first course, BAGNA CAUDA in piemontese dialect means hot sauce. The 'hot' refers to the temperature at which the dish is served. In some regions butter is not used, and in others a type of walnut oil is used along with olive oil.


  • 24 (!) anchovy fillets packed in oil
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons butter
  • 5 or more cloves garlic, peeled
  • Raw vegetables, bread, etc. for dipping


Wash and chop the anchovy fillets. Heat the oil and butter in a large pot; earthernware is best
Heat over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until the garlic is 'poco a poco'- just soft. It must not brown or become too golden.
Add the anchovies and continue to stir over low heat until they just dissolve, about 10 minutes.
The dip should be kept warm at the table, but do not allow it to continue to cook after it is prepared.

Celery, cauliflower, mushrooms, broccoli, spring onions, boiled potatoes are all good for dipping. In some regions artichokes, cabbage, carrots, Cherry tomatoes, green beans, Green or red bell peppers, Radishes, turnips, and zucchini are used.

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Submitted 6/13/05.
Source: David Zerga's Aunt
Submitted By: Eileen Werth