Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Sardines in Saor

Preparing fish in Saor is an old Venetian recipe I've run into among several sources. The recipe here is a mashup of one I found in West Coast Seafood by Jay Harden and another I found in an old book of Italian recipes from Lidia Bastianich. I've made saor before using herring but used fresh Monterey Bay sardines here.

sardines filleted

dusting in flour

lightly frying the floured sardines

sautéing the sliced onions

4 large sardines, scaled and filleted, heads removed
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt
white pepper
1 large onion, sliced
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons raisins
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1 branch fresh rosemary
several twigs fresh thyme
4 bay leaves

Soak the raisins in water in order to plump them up.
Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil.
Dust the sardine fillets in the flour then add to the skillet in batches. Sauté each side about 2 minutes then remove to a casserole dish or plate, seasoning with salt and pepper. Lower the heat to low then add the onion slices to the skillet, cook until translucent without coloring. Add the vinegar and lemon juice, bring to a boil and let reduce to half.
Remove the raisins from their soaking water and drain. Pour the contents of the skillet over the fillets and add the herbs, raisins, and pine nuts. Allow to cool, then cover with plastic wrap and marinate overnight.
The next day, remove the dish from the refrigerator about 30 minutes to bring to room temperature before serving.

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