Rachel De Thample, recipe writer from Abel & Cole, shares this tasty sardine recipe.

Roasting sardines on a bed of aromatics is a magical way of cooking these good-for-you fish. Even more magical, is pairing them with this superb Scandi slaw.

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 15 mins

Serves 4

Butterflied sardines or sardine fillets
1/2 red chilli
1 red onion
2 oranges
A few rosemary sprigs
A few glugs of olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
½ red cabbage
A handful of fresh parsley
1 tsp honey
1 tbsp poppy seeds
2 slices of rye bread
A few dollops of crème fraiche


Crank your oven grill to high or to 220°C/Gas 7.

Thinly slice your chilli and red onion. Slice one of the oranges. Arrange half the chilli and the onion in a roasting tray (save the rest for the slaw). Tuck the sliced orange and rosemary sprigs into the mix.

Season the fish with salt and pepper. Arrange the fish, skin side up, on the bed of aromatics. Gloss with oil.

Grill or roast, on the top shelf, for 10 mins or till the skin has just crisped up. Remove from oven as soon as they’re done.

Thinly shred the cabbage, removing the tough white core. Mix with the remaining onion and chilli. Finely chop your parsley. Add half of it. Grate the zest of the remaining orange over.

Squeeze 4 tbsp of orange juice into a little bowl or jam jar. Whisk or shake with 4 tbsp olive oil, the honey and a pinch of salt and pepper. Mix the dressing in to the slaw, along with half of the poppy seeds.

Get a large frying pan hot. Tear your bread into little nuggets. Gloss the pan with olive oil. Sizzle the rye crumbs till just golden. Season with a little salt. Scatter most over the salad.

Top with the fish. Finish with the remaining croutons, poppy seeds, parsley, a gloss of oil and a few dollops of crème fraîche. Your next trick will be making it all disappear. 

Recipe from the responsibly sourced fish and seafood range at Abel & Cole, in partnership with the Marine Conservation Society.