Grilled Sardines

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

Appears in

Floyd Around the Med

Floyd Around the Med

By Keith Floyd

Published 2000

  • About

Even if you don’t have access to a beach at the back of your garden or a small fire of vine roots, you can still replicate the authentic flavour of Andalusian-style sardines. All you have to do is this:

Method

Put a good layer of coarse sea salt in a shallow tray. Cover the salt with sardines, then cover the sardines with more salt. Repeat until you have three layers of sardines. Leave in the fridge for 6 hours. When you come to grill the sardines, either on a barbecue or, as they do in Spain, on bamboo skewers pegged into the sand in front of the aforementioned vine root fire, simply ensure your barbecue, plancha or hot, dry frying pan is very hot. Take the sardines from the salt but don’t brush off the excess. Grill the sardines for about 4 minutes a side and don’t keep lifting them up to see if they’re done because you will just break them and make them look messy. Have confidence and don’t turn them over until you reckon they are a little bit burnt, a little bit golden, and the skin is studded with crystals of toasted salt. Then turn them over and cook the other side in the same way. Mediterranean people do not gut or fillet the sardines, by the way; they eat them whole.