Grilled sardines on toast with tomatoes and basil

Grilled sardines on toast with tomatoes and basil

By
From
Grill Smoke BBQ
Serves
4
Photographer
Kris Kirkham

This recipe was inspired by summer jaunts to Spain, and enjoying the simple but sublime pan con tomate – bread rubbed with sweet tomatoes. I thought why not add another favourite of mine: smoky, crisp-skinned sardines? They work well together as the tomatoes and basil add a lovely freshness and acidity to the oily fish. I like to serve this with some homemade alioli on the side.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
4 thick slices sourdough bread
2 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
2 very ripe, sweet vine or plum tomatoes, cut in half
2 firm plum tomatoes, cut into thick slices
8 very fresh sardines, butterflied, or 16 sardine fillets
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 bunch basil, leaves picked and torn
olive oil, for cooking
sea salt
black pepper

Method

  1. Light the barbecue and set for direct/indirect cooking.
  2. Drizzle the bread with olive oil and grill on both sides in the direct heat zone until nicely charred. Remove and immediately rub with the crushed garlic cloves and then the halved tomatoes, cut-side down – the idea is to load the bread with the tomato juices and flavour, so a great-tasting tomato is paramount! Place in the indirect heat zone to keep warm.
  3. Season the sliced tomatoes and drizzle with a little oil, then grill in the direct heat zone for a couple of minutes on each side until softened and lightly charred. Move them to the indirect heat zone to keep warm.
  4. Before cooking the sardines, ensure the grill is very clean. Sardine skin is notorious for sticking, so a clean, very hot grill is crucial. Lightly oil the fish, then season and carefully place on the grill, skin-side down. Cook for 2 minutes to char the skin, then carefully turn the fish and finish cooking for a minute on the flesh side. Squeeze over some lemon juice and remove from the grill.
  5. Place the sliced tomatoes on the grilled tomato bread and top with the sardines, finishing with the torn basil leaves.
Tags:
Ember Yard
Salt Yard
Dehesa
Opera Tavern
Soho restaurants
Italian
French
small plates
tapas
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