with spicy mint and cucumber salsa
For a fresh, seafood dish that you can easily cook on the barbeque, Neil Perry shares his Barbequed Sardines with Spicy Mint and Cucumber Salsa recipe. Pair this dish with a glass of Vermentino, Fiano or Arneis for best tasting results!
12 fresh whole sardines
Extra virgin olive oil, plus some for drizzling
Freshly ground pepper
1 lemon quartered
For the spicy mint and cucumber salsa
2 large handfuls mint, finely shredded
1 Lebanese cucumber, cut in half, deseeded and cut into thin slices
1 red onion, finely sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 vine-ripened tomato, peeled, deseeded and diced
4 small red chillies, finely sliced into thin rings
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Recipe by Neil Perry
Photography by John Paul Urizar
Styling by Michaela Le Compte
Food Prep by Sarah-Jane Hallet
1. Combine all the salsa ingredients in a bowl. Mix well and season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper.
2. Heat the barbecue to hot, clean the grill bars, place the sardines on a tray and brush with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt.
3. Place the sardines on the grill and cook for about 2 minutes each side and remove.
4. On each plate, place a big spoon of the salsa in the middle, line the sardines all facing the same way on the salsa. Sprinkle with sea salt, give a good grind of pepper, place a lemon wedge on the plate and drizzle olive oil over the fish. Serve.
Variation: Use sardine fillets, and serve the salsa with crunchy lettuce like baby cos, or even iceberg under it, to make it more like a warm salad. Add lots of herbs.
Vermentino, Fiano or Arneis