Sardines Baked in Tomato

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I think sardines are the most underrated of fish. Fresh sardines are the most intensely satisfying little morsels. This is another Turkish recipe. I’m having a bit of a Mediterranean phase at the minute. I love this dish. It’s SO easy to prepare.

NOTE: Make sure the sardines are FRESH!!! Whilst this meal was utterly delicious, I was unaware of the slight ‘issues’ with the freshness of our fish. As a result the it made its way through our bodies as quickly as a little sardine swimming in the Mediterranean, bringing with it everything in its path along the way.

RECIPE: (Serves 2-3 as a main or 4-5 as a starter)

10 fresh sardines (gutted and washed)
6-8 fresh thyme sprigs
1/2 lemon (juice of)
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
4-5 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves (smashed flat)
1 teaspoon sugar
3/4 cup fresh basil
salt & pepper
1/2 lemon (cut into wedges)

Preheat oven to 180ºC.
Lay the sardines side by side in an ovenproof dish with the thyme sprigs between the fish. Squeeze over the lemon juice.

In a bowl, mix together the tomatoes, olive oil, garlic and sugar. Season with salt & pepper and stir in the basil leaves, keeping a few for garnish.

Spoon over the sardines and then bake uncovered in the oven for 20-25 minutes.

Sprinkle over the olives and basil before serving.

SERVING:Serve with the lemon wedges to squeeze over. Serve with bread and salad. Try my Turkish salad, Çingene Pilavi


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