Sardines with orange, currants and rosemary

For such small fish, sardines pack a flavour punch. The orange and sherry vinegar cut through the rich flesh and balance with the watercress nicely.

You'll need

150 gm flour, seasoned to taste 1 tbsp smoked paprika 8 sardines, butterflied 125 ml (½ cup) olive oil 200 ml Sherry vinegar 2 tbsp currants 1 Spanish onion, thinly sliced 2 tbsp caster sugar 1 garlic clove, bruised 2 tbsp rosemary leaves 80 gm day-old crustless sourdough bread, coarsely torn 1 cup (loosely packed) watercress, trimmed ½ cup (loosely packed) flat-leaf parsley, torn 2 oranges, thinly sliced 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil


  • 01
  • Combine flour and paprika in a bowl, then dust sardines in flour, shaking off excess. Heat half the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Fry sardines skin-side down until crisp and golden (2-3 minutes). Turn and fry until cooked through (1-2 minutes). Transfer to a non-reactive container.
  • 02
  • Combine vinegar, currants, onion, sugar and 100ml water in a saucepan over medium-high heat, bring to a simmer, then pour mixture over sardines and set aside for 15 minutes.
  • 03
  • Heat remaining oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat, add garlic, rosemary and bread and cook until golden all over (2-3 minutes). Drain on absorbent paper (discard garlic).
  • 04
  • Combine watercress, parsley and oranges in a bowl, add sardines, 2 tbsp vinegar mixture and olive oil, toss carefully, season to taste and serve.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 - 6 people

Drink Suggestion

Chalky young Hunter sémillon.

Featured in

Feb 2014

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