should I eat it: self-propelling anchovy paste
March 19, 2014 3:59 PM   Subscribe

I just opened a brand-new tube of anchovy paste to make salad dressing, and when I punctured the seal on the tube, it started to spout anchovy paste, as if the whole thing had been under pressure. It smells and looks fine, but emerged with surprising and alarming velocity.

Other potentially relevant information: Bought it yesterday, stored it in the fridge overnight, though it doesn't need to be refrigerated 'til after it's open. I have a very strong stomach. I really want my kale caesar salad.
posted by dizziest to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
If it smells and looks fine, are you sure it's anchovy paste?

With that said, my Reese brand paste spurts a bit when I open it, although not with any particular velocity.
posted by ftm at 4:06 PM on March 19, 2014 [23 favorites]

What did you puncture it with? I always use the reverse (non-threaded) end of the cap, which sort of seals it while puncturing so it can't spout.

I would use it, but I've sucked it up and stopped buying anchovy paste over the real thing, which is much better (SE concurs) in applications where the anchovy is detectable.
posted by supercres at 4:12 PM on March 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

Is it possible that you were holding the tube a little harder than you realized as you were puncturing the seal? I do this every time I open a tube of harissa.

I'd eat it, but I'm usually in the "eat it" camp.
posted by Room 641-A at 4:27 PM on March 19, 2014 [4 favorites]

Yeah, this happens. There's nothing wrong with it.
posted by grateful at 4:28 PM on March 19, 2014 [2 favorites]

Now that it's all over the counter you kind of have to eat it rather than saving it anyway, right?

I would guess that it just got shipped from the other side of the Rockies or something like that. I've had similar things happen with groceries and toiletries that have been stored at one altitude and then moved to another. Or maybe it got some extra air trapped in the tube at some point during packaging?

Personally, I'd chalk it up to a fluke or a consequence of shipping routes and eat it.
posted by rue72 at 4:29 PM on March 19, 2014 [2 favorites]

Nah, it's fine. My tomato paste does that all the time.
posted by Salamander at 4:34 PM on March 19, 2014

Response by poster: I ate it. It was delicious. Thanks for encouraging me in my always-eating-it ways, Metafilter.

And ok yeah, by "it smells and looks fine," I meant it smells like salty garbage and looks like baby diarrhea and the cat is way too excited about it, but I didn't want to say all that.
posted by dizziest at 4:40 PM on March 19, 2014 [50 favorites]

I think the anchovy paste is fine, but would encourage you to consider making a delicious pasta puttanesca instead.
posted by fingersandtoes at 5:31 PM on March 19, 2014 [1 favorite]

Anchovy paste always does that to me. The tube is made out of a somewhat more rigid, malleable foil than e.g. toothpaste tubes, and once squished, can hold their shape and hold a bit of pressure on the paste, which then starts to come out once the seal is punctured.
posted by WasabiFlux at 7:48 PM on March 19, 2014

The obvious next step: Tomato and Anchovy Sauce, my half-Italian mother's homage to the Christmas Eve Feast of the Seven Fishes.
posted by virago at 10:55 AM on March 20, 2014

MetaFilter: It smells and looks fine, but emerged with surprising and alarming velocity.

posted by scrump at 10:43 AM on March 21, 2014 [2 favorites]

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