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Sardine and Fennel Bruschetta with Slow Roasted Tomatoes, Garden Greens and Herbes de Provence crust



Sardine and Fennel Bruschetta with Slow Roasted Tomatoes, Garden Greens and Herbes de Provence Crust

Recipe: Chris Erasmus

Such a basic little dish - Sardines on Toast - offering at the same time complexity of flavour and an easy, fragrant freshness. Just perfect with a fresh white such as the 2022 La Motte Sauvignon Blanc or an elegant rosé such as the 2021 Vin de Joie Rosé.

Fennel

2 freshly picked fennel bulbs, sliced as thin as possible

4 garlic cloves, sliced thinly

1 ½ cups extra virgin olive oil

Zest and juice of 1 lemon

3T chopped fennel tops

1tsp coarse sea salt

  • Place all the ingredients in a saucepan and place a round of greaseproof paper on the surface of the mixture and press down to remove all air.
  • Heat until tiny bubbles appear and keep the heat as low as possible so it doesn't start frying, keep the heat for 35-50 minutes until the fennel is tender.
  • Strain off the oil and flatten the fennel in a bowl and place the greaseproof paper on top so it stays moist, keep warm until needed.

 Tomatoes

4 medium heirloom tomatoes, blanched and skins removed

3T olive oil

½ tsp Herbes de Provence

½ tsp sea salt

¼ tsp cracked black pepper

  • Preheat the oven to 140°
  • Slice the tomatoes in half and gently coat with the remaining ingredients.
  • Place on a tray line with greaseproof paper and load into the oven.
  • Roast for 3-4 hours until caramelised and lightly shrivelled.

Crust

2 slices day old sourdough bread slices

2 garlic cloves

Zest of 1 lemon

¼ cup grated parmesan or pecorino

1T olive oil

¼ tsp salt

1T herbes de provence

  • Place all the ingredients in a food processor and blitz into a crumb.
  • Place on top of the tomatoes and place under a salamander or oven grill to crisp up before serving.

Sardines

6-8 sardines, filleted and bones removed

4T olive oil

2T good quality balsamic vinegar

1T chopped thyme

4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

  • Place all the ingredients in a sealable jar and marinade overnight.
  • Remove the sardine fillets from the marinade and pat dry.
  • Heat a non stick pan and add 2tsp olive oil.
  • Fry the sardines for 20 seconds on each side, turn up the heat to high and add 2T of the marinade, cook for 10 seconds to glaze. Serve immediately.

Assembly

4 slices of day old sourdough

1T olive oil

½ cup freshly picked rocket

¼ cup freshly picked garden sorrel

¼ cup fennel leaves

  • Rub the olive oil onto the sourdough and grill on both sides until golden and crisp.
  • Top with the warm confit fennel, garden greens, sardines and crusted tomatoes, serve warm.

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