Mar 24 2015

Roasted Sardines With Seaweed Salsa Verde Recipe


Photo: Armando Rafael for The Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Heather Meldrom, Prop Styling by Nidia Cueva

Total Time: 1½ hours Serves: 6, as an appetizer

2 tablespoons minced shallots
1 small clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons minced white onions
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing and garnish
6 (approx. 6-by-8-inch) sheets Japanese nori (seaweed), torn into small pieces
12 fresh sardines, cleaned, scaled and butterflied
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ tablespoon salt-packed capers, rinsed, soaked for 2 hours, drained and minced
1½ tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon dark Japanese soy sauce
3 tablespoons chopped mint leaves
¼ cup puffed rice (optional)

1. Make salsa verde: In a lidded small saucepan over low heat, sweat shallots, garlic and onions in ½ cup olive oil until beginning to steam. Cover, and cook until soft, 10 minutes. Off heat, stir in nori, and let marinate 20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, prepare sardines: Lightly rinse in cold water, then pat dry. Season both sides of fish with salt, then brush with oil. Place fish, skin-side up, on a baking sheet. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

3. Strain marinated nori mixture, reserving oil. Finely mince solids, then combine with capers in a mixing bowl. Stir in lime juice, soy sauce, reserved oil and salt to taste. Sauce should be thin enough to spread easily. Thin with up to ¼ cup additional oil, as needed. Gently fold in mint and puffed rice, if using, until incorporated.

4. Place fish in oven and roast until skin lightly crackles and sizzles, about 4 minutes. Divide fish among serving plates. Dollop salsa verde on and around fish, then finish with a drizzle of oil.

—Adapted from Theo Adley of the Squeaky Bean, Denver

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