Marinated sardines with chick-peas and bacon

Orange juice and zest add a delicious citrus zip to sardines in Simon Rimmer's creative and flavourful fish dish
By Simon Rimmer
Marinated sardines with chick-peas and bacon
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes plus at least 6 hrs marinating
  • Effort: medium



  • 18 small sardines, cleaned
  • 8 mint leaves, to garnish

For the marinade

  • 4 oranges, juiced
  • 30 ml sherry vinegar
  • salt

For the stuffing

  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 onion, peeled
  • 1 aubergine
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

For the salad

  • 25 g lardons of bacon
  • 50 g croutons
  • 125 g chickpeas, cooked
  • 2 spring onions, chopped

For the vinaigrette

  • 100 ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 15 g walnuts, chopped
  • 1 orange, juiced
  • 15 ml sherry vinegar
  • salt
  • pepper


1. First make the marinade. Mix together the orange juice, sherry vinegar and salt.

2. Toss the sardines with the marinade in a large dish and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours.

3. Preheat the oven to 190°C/gas 5.

4. Toss the red pepper, onion and aubergine in the olive oil in a roasting tray. Roast for 30 minutes until tender.

5. Cut the roasted red pepper, onion and aubergine into short, thin strips and toss together.

6. Fry the bacon in a small, heavy-based frying pan until cooked.

7. In a bowl, mix together the fried bacon, croutons, chick-peas and spring onions.

8. Make the vinaigrette by whisking together the olive oil, walnuts, orange juice and sherry vinegar. Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

9. Toss the chick-pea mixture with the vinaigrette.

10. Drain the marinated sardines. Stuff each sardine with the roasted vegetables.

11. To serve, spoon the chick-pea salad onto a serving plate. Top with the stuffed sardines, garnish with mint leaves and serve.

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