Sardines en Escabeche with Fresh Tarragon

May 25, 2011


Author Notes: The humble sardine is an underappreciated fish. They're small, bony, oily, bold in flavor, and I love them. They remind me of Greece and other parts of the Mediterranean (ahhh, wish I was there...) where the sardine is highly praised, and credited for the longevity of the Mediterranean people.

This version of escabeche is subtle in the vinegar department, complemented by unexpected anise notes, the latter due to the addition of fresh tarragon. A very light and refreshing spring dish.
wildgreens

Serves: 2

Ingredients

Preparing the Sardines

  • 1 pound fresh sardines
  • flour for dusting sardines
  • sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

Marinade

  • 4 tablespoons champagne or white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon, chopped
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste

Directions

Preparing the Sardines

  1. Pat the sardines dry. Sprinkle the cavity and skin with salt. Dust the sardines in flour to lightly coat. Shake off the excess flour.
  2. Heat a large skillet with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. When smoking hot, add the sardines. Cook 3 to 4 minutes per side (for larger sardines) and 2 to 3 minutes per side (for smaller sardines).
  3. With a sharp knife, fillet each fish. Place the fillets in a medium-sized casserole dish. Pour the marinade over the fish. Cover with plastic wrap. Let marinate in the refrigerator over night.

Marinade

  1. Combine all the ingredients for the dressing. Whisk to incorporate. Pour over the sardines

More Great Recipes:
Seafood|Sardine|Entree

Reviews (4) Questions (0)

4 Reviews

hookmountaingrowers January 7, 2012
I finally have some fresh sardines on hand. What would you recommend as a substitute for the fresh tarragon if I have none accessible?
 
healthierkitchen May 25, 2011
Just bought some fresh sardines to experiment with last week! This sounds delicious!
 
Author Comment
wildgreens May 25, 2011
I think the tarragon is a nice addition. Hope you enjoy!
 
nogaga May 25, 2011
I love sardines (we have them fresh here:) and love escabeche... Thank you for this great recipe. I love the idea of champagne vinegar!