- 250 gm brown rice
- 50 gm pine nuts
- ½ Spanish onion, thinly sliced
- 50 ml red wine vinegar
- 30 ml lemon juice
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 80 ml (1/3 cup) extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for brushing
- 10 mg (¼ cup) dried barberries, soaked in hot water for 10 minutes, drained (see note)
- ½ cup each coarsely torn flat-leaf parsley, mint and dill sprigs
- 8 sardines (about 150gm each)
- 4 large vine leaves in brine, rinsed, stalks trimmed, halved lengthways (see note)
- 1Cook rice in boiling salted water until just tender (15-20 minutes), drain and refresh.
- 2Meanwhile, dry-roast pine nuts until golden (2-3 minutes), set aside. Combine onion, vinegar, lemon juice and garlic in a non-reactive bowl and stand until onion changes colour (4-5 minutes), add olive oil and season to taste. Add barberries, herbs, rice and pine nuts, season to taste and set aside.
- 3Preheat a char-grill over medium-high heat. Wrap each sardine in a piece of vine leaf, then brush with a little oil. Char-grill, turning once, until slightly charred and sardines are firm (3-4 minutes each side), then serve hot with brown rice, pine nuts and barberries.
Note Barberries and vine leaves are available from select delicatessens. If barberries are unavailable, substitute currants.
Drink Suggestion: Bone-dry white vermentino. Drink suggestion by Max Allen