Sardine patties

Sardine patties

By
From
Sicily
Makes
35 patties

During the period of the Bourbons, the Sicilian people couldn’t afford meat and substituted fish for the meat in meatballs. Actually, it was probably far healthier than the meat version and full of nutritious omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins. Sardine patties are great for party canapés, served at room temperature with a squeeze of lemon just before serving. Alternatively, they can be made into the size of small hamburgers and served warm with the Orange & Fennel Salad, the Sweet & Sour Onions or in the Cherry Tomato Sauce as a starter or main course. Traditionally, they are deep-fried but they work well fried in just a little oil in a non-stick frying pan; or you could bake them in the oven to be healthier. Don’t be put off using tinned sardines – they are as healthy as fresh and a great way to use this inexpensive source of protein.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
15 small fresh sardines
or 4 x 120g tins sardines
1 small onion, grated
100g fresh gluten-free or wheat breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons juicy sweet currants or raisins
3 tablespoons pine nuts
large handful mint leaves, finely chopped
large handful parsley, finely chopped
1 heaped teaspoon salt
good twist freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons white wine or sweet marsala
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
seed oil, for frying
or extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing if baking

Method

  1. Cut the flesh of the fresh sardines into small pieces no bigger than 5 mm, discarding the spines and heads. If using tinned, drain them and roughly mash with a fork. Mix the sardines with the rest of the ingredients (except the seed oil or olive oil for brushing).
  2. Test the flavour of the patties by making just one to begin with. Form the mixture into a ball in your hands, approximately 3 cm across. Flatten it slightly and fry it in a little oil on both sides until lightly golden and cooked through. Taste and adjust the seasoning and flavours of the remaining mixture as necessary. Make up the rest of the patties and fry in batches in more oil as before
  3. To cook them in the oven, space them out on a baking tray lined with baking parchment and brush with a little olive oil. Bake in a preheated oven at 180°C for 15–20 minutes or until cooked through.
Tags:
Italy
Italian
Sicily
Sicilian
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