Archive for the Recipes Category

Aug 10 2017

Recipe: Grilled Squid With Cherry Tomato Salad & Aioli

Grilled Squid With Cherry Tomato Salad & Aioli

Serves 4

This recipe from Camino’s Russell Moore pairs tender grilled squid with fresh cherry tomatoes dressed in a light vinaigrette. Flare-ups on the grill can impart a sooty taste to squid, so be sure to let the coals burn down until they are covered with ash and no longer flaming.


2 pounds fresh squid, cleaned

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest

¼ teaspoon hot red pepper flakes or other hot ground red pepper

Kosher or sea salt to taste


1 garlic clove

1 large egg yolk, at room temperature

½ cup extra virgin olive oil


1 pound chard leaves, ribs removed

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Cherry tomato salad

½ pound cherry tomatoes, red or golden, halved

3 tablespoons finely minced red onion

4 to 6 basil leaves, torn

2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil

1½ teaspoons red wine vinegar, or to taste

To prepare the squid: Toss the squid bodies and tentacles with olive oil, lemon zest and hot pepper. Refrigerate for 1 to 2 hours. Skewer the squid bodies through the tail so that they will lie flat when the skewer is placed on the grill; when you lift the skewer, they should hang like sheets from a clothesline. You may need 2 skewers for the bodies. Thread the tentacles on a separate skewer. Keep refrigerated until ready to grill.

Prepare a charcoal fire and let it burn down until the coals are completely covered with ash.

To make the aioli: Pound the garlic clove and a large pinch of salt to a paste in a mortar, or mince to a paste with a chef’s knife. Put the egg yolk and garlic in a small bowl, add 1 teaspoon of warm water and whisk to blend. Add the olive oil gradually, drop by drop at first, whisking constantly until the mixture visibly thickens and emulsifies. Once you have achieved an emulsion, you can add the oil in a thin, steady stream, whisking constantly. Taste and add more salt if needed.

To make the chard: Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the chard leaves and stir them down into the water with tongs or a wooden spoon. Cook until the chard is just tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain and cool quickly under cold running water. Squeeze dry, then chop coarsely. Heat the olive oil in a small skillet over moderately low heat. Add the chopped greens and toss to coat them evenly with the oil. Season to taste with salt. Set aside.

To make the cherry tomato salad: Put the cherry tomatoes, onion and basil in a bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, wine vinegar and salt to taste. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and toss, then taste and adjust the seasoning.

To finish and serve: Just before grilling, season the squid with salt. Grill, turning once, until the bodies are white and the interior is cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Watch for flare-ups and move the squid as necessary to avoid imparting a sooty taste. While the squid cooks, reheat the chard.

Divide the chard among 4 dinner plates. Remove the squid bodies and tentacles from the skewers and arrange over the chard. Spoon the tomato salad over the squid and place dollops of aioli alongside. Serve immediately.

Apr 18 2016

Recipe: Grilled Sardines, Basque Port Style


There is nothing better than simply grilled sardines in season. They are a social food—you don’t eat one, you have an afternoon’s worth—and they arrive crusted in a bloom of evaporated seawater.

Total Time: 20 minutes Serves: 4

  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • 10 cups room-temperature water
  • 8 fresh Mediterranean, Greek or American sardines, rinsed, scaled, and optionally gutted
  • ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Japanese or Maldon smoked sea salt, for finishing (optional)
  • Grilled bread, for serving

1. Make a brine: Combine kosher salt and water in a large bowl or other vessel and stir to dissolve. Add sardines and let stand 15 minutes. Remove fish from brine, discard brine and pat fish on both sides with paper towels until thoroughly dry. Rub sardines with oil on both sides.

2. Lightly oil an 8-inch wire-mesh strainer and place it directly on top of a burner on a gas stove. Turn burner on and allow screen to heat about 15 seconds. Place 4 oiled sardines on screen and then immediately lift screen 1-2 inches above flame to prevent burning sardines excessively. Return screen to burner and cook fish 1 minute on first side. Then, using tongs, carefully flip sardines and cook on the second side 30 seconds more. Expect some flames and crackling from the oily sardine juices that fall on the fire, and when flare-ups occur, pull screen away until flames die down, then move fish back to heat source. When fish are ready, transfer to a platter. Repeat until they are all cooked.

3. Sprinkle sardines with smoked salt and serve immediately with grilled bread for soaking up juices.

Originally posted in The Wall Street Journal

Jun 15 2015

Kin Khao’s Recipe for Charred Squid in a Chili-Garlic Sauce

Pan-sear tender squid, douse it in a seriously spicy sauce and scatter it with peanuts and cilantro for a simple, striking summer meal. This recipe from Kin Khao in San Francisco offers an accessible intro to authentic Thai cooking

squidHERBAL REMEDY | A scattering of cilantro provides a refreshing counterpoint to the bold spice and pungency of the sauce. Photo: Stephen Kent Johnson for The Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Heather Meldrom, Prop Styling by Nidia Cueva

AT 31 YEARS OLD, Mike Gaines had mastered classical French and Japanese as well as New California cooking. But when he signed on to help open Kin Khao, a casual Thai eatery in downtown San Francisco, in a sense he was starting all over again. The restaurant’s owner, Pim Techamuanvivit, wasn’t worried: “I knew Mike was an excellent chef,” she said of her plan to introduce him to dishes she’d eaten all her life. “For me,” Mr. Gaines added, “the most difficult part was finding the balance Pim was looking for. When you are dealing with such bold flavors, you have to retrain your palate.”

This recipe for pan-seared squid doused in a bracing vinaigrette and topped with toasted peanuts and fresh cilantro—the pair’s second Slow Food Fast contribution—provides a crash course in authentic Thai cooking. “I insisted that it be kick-you-in-the-face spicy,” Ms. Techamuanvivit said.

The sauce, made with fresh chilies, fish sauce, garlic, lime juice and palm sugar, is known as nam jim talay. “It should be sour, spicy, garlicky and sweet,” said Ms. Techamuanvivit. “Thai cooks use sugar to round things out. If the first thing you taste is sweet, then the sauce is wrong.” She added that though the seafood used in this dish may change according to the season, the toppings never do: “The peanut and cilantro are not just garnishes. They are integral to the dish.”

Both Mr. Gaines and Ms. Techamuanvivit lament the way Thai cooking has been dumbed down in this country. From their modest yet ambitious kitchen, they are working to raise the bar with punchy, fresh and textured dishes like this one. Mr. Gaines compared their efforts to what chefs did a couple of decades ago to increase awareness about regional Italian cooking versus the Americanized pasta and pizza that had become ubiquitous. He was firm on this point: “Thai food is much more nuanced than we think.”

Charred Squid in a Chili-Garlic Sauce

Total Time: 20 minutes Serves: 4

5 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1½ bird’s eye or other hot chilies, stemmed, seeded and roughly chopped
3 tablespoons palm sugar or light brown sugar
Juice of 1½ limes
5 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons bran or olive oil
2 pounds whole squid, cleaned
1 cup chopped cilantro
¼ cup toasted and finely chopped peanuts
Cooked sticky or white rice, for serving

1. Use a mortar and pestle or a food processor to crush garlic, chilies and sugar to a coarse paste. Transfer to a small bowl, then stir in lime juice and fish sauce. Set aside.

2. Heat half the oil in a cast-iron or other large, heavy pan over high heat. Once oil is shimmeringhot, sear half the squid, turning frequently, until surface browns on all sides and squid just cooks through, about 3 minutes total. Repeat with remaining oil and squid.

3. Transfer squid to a serving plate and spoon sauce over top. Sprinkle with cilantro and peanuts. Serve with sticky or white rice.

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May 9 2015

Embracing Squid in Its Many Forms

13KITCHEN1-master675Evan Sung for The New York Times

It’s funny that people who are normally squeamish about eating oddball food have no problem with squid.

Maybe it’s because most people encounter squid as fried calamari, which are often deep-fried rings with no discernible ocean flavor. This generic crisp and salty bar snack served with marinara sauce has mass appeal for young and old, even small children. But if they were told that calamari are actually bizarre-looking cephalopods with tentacles, and not somehow related to chicken nuggets, most kids wouldn’t touch them.

A platter of fried calamari does make a good introduction to squid, though, and can be quite wonderful when it’s well prepared. A good Italian restaurant is the best place to have them, maybe as part of a fritto misto. Many Thai restaurants offer excellent renditions sparked with hot pepper, mint and basil. In Spain, at streetside stands, you can buy a paper cone filled with freshly fried tiny squid called chipirones. They’ll make you swoon.

There are countless other ways to enjoy squid. Try them whole, seasoned with salt, pepper and olive oil. Roast them uncovered in a hot oven for 10 minutes or so, or throw them on the grill. With a dab of aioli or salsa verde — divine.

13KITCHEN3-articleLargeEvan Sung for The New York Times

Braised long-cooked squid is also delectable. Simmering in tomato sauce until tender, or in a hearty red wine sauce, a common method used in many parts of Europe, is a way of treating squid a bit more like meat than fish. And squid stewed “in its own ink” shows up in arroz negro, a kind of black paella, or in pasta nero, garlicky spaghetti in a rich black sauce.

Sicilian cooks often make calamari ripieni, filling the whole squid’s cavity with a savory bread-crumb stuffing. For this recipe, I add typical Sicilian ingredients like chard, fennel, anchovy, pecorino and pine nuts for an especially herby effect. The wild fennel fronds that grow prolifically on Sicilian soil are not available where I live, so I use a combination of fronds from cultivated fennel and crushed fennel seeds. Cooks in Northern California can forage for it, though.

13KITCHEN2-articleLargeEvan Sung for The New York Times

Some use toothpicks to keep the stuffing in, but I don’t mind if some falls out while the calamari are roasting.

Be sure to purchase the tentacles as well as the tubes (some fishmongers sell them separately). They are delicious when roasted alongside the stuffed calamari and great fun to eat.

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Apr 23 2015

Sardines are gone, long live the mackerel, with six recipes

ii7ccskn-recipe-dbMackerel baked with bay and lemon | Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times

 *corrected figures of jack mackerel catch

There will be no California sardines in the market this summer. But, as much as we’ll miss them, that’s probably a good thing.

Monday the Pacific Fishery Management Council, the group responsible for setting catch limits for California fishermen, closed the sardine fishery completely, citing a 91% drop in sardine population. Beginning July 1, there will be no sardines caught from Mexico to British Columbia.

Although this may conjure up visions of Cannery Row and earlier sardine collapses, this closure could actually be a blessing in disguise. So rather than mourning it as a disaster, use it as an opportunity to expand your fishy horizons.

Unlike many fisheries, which remain relatively steady from year to year if managed properly, sardines have always been extremely cyclical — even before fishermen started catching them. Scientists analyzing ocean bed sediment have found evidence of sardine population collapses dating at least 1,700 years.

The most famous of these, of course, came in the 1940s and 1950s and drove the many Monterey Bay sardine canners out of business (inadvertently paving the way decades later for a terrific aquarium and tourist enclave).

In the 1930s, California fishermen caught as much as 700,000 tons of sardines; by the mid 1960s that had plummeted to only 1,000 tons. But just as people began talking about possible extinction, the fish came roaring back. As recently as 2012, there were nearly 100,000 tons caught.

The difference between then and now is that today there is a strong enough fisheries management program to at least minimize the human influence on this natural cycle. Sardines may come and go, but if fishermen keep catching them, they can turn a downturn into a disaster — as happened in Monterey. Closing the fishery is a way to let the population recover.

If you’re a sardine lover, though, what are you to do? First, you may still see imported sardines at Japanese fish markets such as Mitsuwa and Marukai, though they’ll probably be a little more expensive.

Perhaps a better solution is to swing with the cycle. Fish folk have long known that sardine and mackerel populations ebb and flow complementarily — when sardines are plentiful, mackerel tend to be scarce, and vice versa.

And sure enough, just as the jack mackerel catch off California crashed a couple of years ago (in 2011, only 60 tons were caught), the last few years have seen a tremendous rebound. In 2013, the last year for which statistics are available, almost 900 tons were caught.

Mourn the sardine, certainly, but take this opportunity to embrace the mackerel. Here’s six recipes to get you started.

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Mar 26 2015

Why These Overlooked Fish May Be The Tastiest (And Most Sustainable)

By Elizabeth Gunnison Dunn
Market Fish En Papillote Photo: Armando Rafael for The Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Heather Meldrom, Prop Styling by Nidia Cueva

A FEW YEARS AGO, one of Charleston’s finest fishing boat captains approached chef Mike Lata with a problem: If business didn’t improve, he would have to hang it up. Federal quotas limited how much lucrative grouper and snapper he could catch, and while there were plenty of other fish for the taking, what he brought in barely sold for enough to cover gas. So, the chef made him a proposition:

The Recipes


Roasted sardines with seaweed salsa verde Photo: Armando Rafael for The Wall Street Journal, Food Styling by Heather Meldrom, Prop Styling by Nidia Cueva

“I told him on his next trip to bring us everything he caught, and we’d pay.” Mr. Lata and his cooks set to work on the catch—a grab bag of amberjack, banded rudderfish, mackerel, eel, lionfish and sea robin—and discovered that many of these fish were remarkably delicious. “This was great product, treated with care and attention, only the species names weren’t marketable. So, we decided to take care of the marketing side.”

Mr. Lata is one of a growing number of chefs making a case for eating abundant domestic species that have up until now been largely ignored. These are widely referred to as “trash fish,” a name originally bestowed by fisherman unable to sell them, now co-opted by some of their staunchest advocates.

The sea is home to thousands of fish species, but only a few of them regularly appear on American tables. Shrimp, tuna, salmon and tilapia together account for nearly 70% of seafood consumed in the U.S.; in the case of fine dining, cod, halibut and sea bass have also been in heavy rotation for the past 30 years. These once-plentiful species have retained pride of place on menus and behind fish counters long after it stopped making ecological sense, as chefs and seafood purveyors have catered to a dining public skeptical of trading salmon and swordfish for fish with names like “scup” and “smelt.”

Every fishery has a unique set of under-loved species. Waters in the Northeast are teeming with pollock, hake and dogfish, which match the flaky, mild profile of dwindling cod. Acadian redfish, once used for lobster bait off the coast of Maine, makes a superior alternative to tilapia, much of which is raised in antibiotic-spiked pools in China. The Chesapeake Bay is lousy with blue catfish, similar to the basa being imported by the ton from Vietnam. Firm, buttery and plentiful Pacific lingcod is a good understudy for pricey halibut. “There are incredibly delicious, vibrant, abundant fish out there and people don’t know about them,” said Michael Dimin, the co-founder of Sea to Table, a supplier to top seafood restaurants like New York’s Marea and RM Seafood in Las Vegas.

Confronted by the copious overlooked species swimming off Massachusetts, chef Michael Leviton is working on a trash fish cookbook. At Lumière in Newton, Mass., he regularly serves such underappreciated species as Acadian redfish and porgy.

Would you eat goosefish or slimehead? Chances are, you already have, and just didn’t realize you were eating a re-branded trash fish. WSJ’s Jeff Bush reports.

“Diners have become very accustomed to chefs going to the farmers’ market and putting on the menu whatever is fresh and local,” said Barton Seaver, director of the Healthy and Sustainable Food program at Harvard’s School of Public Health. “We’re just beginning to see that sustainable menu philosophy applied to fisheries.”

Earlier this week, chefs from 20 of the world’s best restaurants—including Grant Achatz of Chicago’s Alinea and Daniel Humm of Eleven Madison Park in New York—committed to serving ocean-friendly species like anchovies, herring and sardines on World Oceans Day, which falls on June 8th. And Chefs Collaborative, a nonprofit organization focused on sustainability, has organized seven Trash Fish Dinners around the country in recent years, gathering top chefs to work their magic with local invasive species, by-catch and other alien sea creatures. The most recent such dinner took place at the Squeaky Bean in Denver, where chef Theo Adley cooks with the likes of snakehead, brown shrimp, moon snails and drum. “We go for broke in terms of the range of fish we serve,” Mr. Adley said. “A lot of the challenges we face have to do with guest knowledge, and providing a gentle education in terms of what a fish is going to taste like.”

As a member of Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch’s Blue Ribbon Task Force, chef Jonathon Sawyer is similarly committed to supporting a diversity of species. His menus at Greenhouse Tavern and Trentina in Cleveland, Ohio, simply list “market fish,” which gives him flexibility to buy the best-choice catch of the moment. Porgy, grunt, black drum and farmed sturgeon have all made appearances.

Trash fish advocates hope that introducing diners to a wider array of seafood in restaurants will ultimately trickle down to home kitchens. It will likely take time, given home cooks’ hesitancy to work with unfamiliar fish, and the fact that most seafood counters still offer only well-worn options. Mr. Dimin and Mr. Seaver encourage consumers to start by choosing only domestically caught fish—U.S. fisheries are regulated to protect vulnerable species—and letting the best local choice dictate the preparation method, rather than shopping to a recipe.

After all, cooking with the whole net offers benefits beyond the ecological; it provides novelty at the table, it’s cost efficient and, best of all, choosing a local porgy or dogfish rather than farmed or imported options keeps fishing communities all over the country in business.

“Fishing is the last true hunting on earth,” Mr. Dimin said. “We have a duty to protect it.”


Read the original post here.

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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Mar 6 2015

10 unexpected foods on TIME’s 50 Healthiest Foods’ list

istock-sardinesSardines on TIME’s ‘healthiest foods’ list? iStockphoto

TIME Magazine recently published its list of the 50 healthiest foods we all should be eating. With the help of registered dietitian Tina Ruggerio, author of The Truly Healthy Family Cookbook and the folks at Cooking Light, they have provided not only why these foods are so healthy, but also offer simple recipes to make incorporating them into your diet easy peasy.

While most of the food items on the list won’t surprise you (We all know eating more fruits and vegetables is important), there were 10 items that seemed a little unexpected. From sardines to household spices like cumin, there are some surprises on this list.


These tiny fish show that size doesn’t matter when it comes packing a nutritional punch. They are a good source of calcium as well as improve blood flow and help with inflammation. One can of sardines is only 191 calories and has 22.7 grams of protein. Try Cooking Light’s Fennel-Sardine Spaghetti recipe.


Another small fish, the anchovy, can be an acquired taste for some, but they are a great source of protein, vitamin B, calcium, iron and omega-3 fatty acids. Even better, they are low in mercury. Only two drained and minced anchovy fillets are required for Cooking Light’s Spicy Anchovy Broccoli.


Kefir is a fermented milk drink that has actually been shown to improve lactose intolerance and to fight cavities. It is chock full of good microbes. Simply add to a smoothie instead of milk or yogurt.

Rooibos tea

This red tea can help protect you from chronic and degenerative diseases and is a great source of calcium and iron. Other plus points? No calories and easy to make. Just add to hot water.


Apparently the phrase “spicing up your life” should refer not only to your sex life, but to actual spices as well. This orange color spice derived from the root of the Curcuma longa plant can help your body fight viruses and inflammation. Some research also points to its ability to prevent Alzheimer’s and cancer as well. Just one teaspoon in a dish like an Omelet with Turmeric, Tomato, and Onions by Cooking Light can make a positive impact in your health.


It definitely might surprise you to know that a common kitchen spice like Cumin can improve your heart health as well as fight infection. According to TIME, you get twice as many antioxidants in a one-half teaspoon of ground cumin than in a carrot. Lightly sprinkle salmon fillets with cumin and other mixtures for this heart healthy recipe by Cooking Light: Cumin-Dusted Salmon Fillets.


The tuna, especially canned tuna, tends to be an underrated compared to the glitzy salmon, but our budgets might not always be able to afford a salmon fillet so it is nice to know that a tuna fish sandwich can also help boost our brain health and reduce our risk of cardiovascular disease. Just remember that there is the risk of mercury poisoning so be careful how much of it you eat on a weekly basis. Pregnant women, breast-feeding women and young children have to be especially careful. This week make a simple tuna fish sandwich or add Cooking Light’s Arugula, Italian Tuna, and White Bean Salad to your menu.

Hemp seeds

Whatever your stance on marijuana, the cannabis sativa plant has other uses. Its hemp seeds are a good source of protein and will provide you with all nine essential amino acids as well as vitamin E. If you like pine nuts, you’ll love the taste. A simple way to add hemp seeds into your diet is to add a handful to a smoothie or your morning oatmeal; you can even sprinkle some on your salad.


People tend to either love or hate these fungi, but what can’t be denied is that they are the highest vegan source of vitamin D. Eating mushrooms can also help you fight cancer, and contains riboflavin which is important for the body’s ability to detox. Don’t like eating mushrooms raw? Cooking Light has a Penne with Sage and Mushroom recipe that you might find more appealing.


Besides fighting off vampire and over amorous kissers, garlic also is very good for our health. Improve your immunity and protect your joints by adding garlic to your diet. Garlic-and-Herb Oven Fried Halibut by Cooking Light requires only 1 large garlic clove.

Were you surprised by any of the other items on TIME’s list?

Read the original post: | by Tracey Romero

Jan 22 2015

Barbecue sardines — recipe

430607788-1abuh8lPicture: Iain Gillespie

Kirsty Carre — January 22, 2015 — Posted in the The West Australian

Serves 4

2 lemons, zested and juiced

2 green chillies

1/2 cup olive oil

2 tbsp parsley

3 garlic cloves

1 shallot, peeled

1/2 tsp salt

16 sardines, butterflied

2 tbsp olive oil

sourdough bread


Place the lemon zest and juice, chillies, olive oil, parsley, garlic cloves, peeled shallot and salt in a food processor and blitz until it forms a thick sauce. Coat the sardines in olive oil and place them in a barbecue cage (you may need to do this in several batches). Grill on either side for 2-3 minutes. Serve on grilled slices of sourdough with the sauce drizzled over the top.

May 13 2014

How to fillet fresh sardines, no knife required

By Michael Cimarusti
May 10 –


Filleting fresh sardines is worth the effort. (David Silverman / Getty Images)

Fresh sardines are a bit of work to prepare. Small fish usually are, but don’t let that deter you. They’re worth the effort. And once you get it down, the process goes quickly. You don’t even need a knife to fillet a sardine. Their flesh is so soft they can be filleted with your thumbnail. In fact, doing this will help you preserve the texture. By filleting sardines this way, you force the bones out of the flesh. When you cut sardines with a knife, you cut through the bones, leaving them behind in the fillets.

Start by gutting the fish. Place the fish on a clean napkin with the belly facing you. Use your thumbnail to separate flesh from bone where the anal fin meets the belly.

Work your thumb under the flesh while sliding your thumb toward the tail of the fish. At this point the flesh of the sardine should be separated from the bone on the first side.

Slide your finger on top of the backbone toward the head of the fish to separate the ribs from the fillet. At this point you will be able to see where the backbone terminates at the tail. Pinch the backbone of the sardine between your thumb and pointer finger and break it.

Gently lift up on the severed backbone, and it will pull free from the flesh, bringing many of the smaller bones with it. When you get to the head of the sardine, you can pinch the backbone again to sever it from the head and lift it free. Whether you leave the head on the fish is up to you.

View the original article here.