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Barbecued Sardines with Salsa Verde

Prep Time
10 minutes
Cook Time
6 minutes
Total Time
16 minutes

You cannot beat the smell of fresh barbecued sardines cooked in a wood-fired oven. I recommend placing the sardines on a fish rack for ease of handling and turning over. I tend to use some old dariole moulds to position one on each corner of the oven, so I’m able to sit the fish rack on them and barbecue at an even height.


  • 12 fresh whole sardines, choose good size ones
  • 4 slices of sourdough bread
  • Sea salt
  • For the salsa verde:
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 big handfuls of fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 bunch of fresh basil
  • 1 handful of fresh mint
  • 1 small handful of capers
  • 1 small handful of gherkins
  • 6 quality anchovy fillets
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 8 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil


  1. Pre-heat your wood-fired oven to a medium heat (200°C). Once you are ready to cook the sardines spread the embers over the base of the oven ready to barbecue. The embers should white in colour before you start cooking the sardines, otherwise they will flame up and burn the skins.
  2. For the salsa verde, place all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until well mixed but the salsa is still coarse.
  3. Barbecue the sardines on the hot embers for about 2-3 minutes on each side.
  4. Season with sea salt and serve on some toasted sourdough bread and a spoonful of the salsa verde.

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Joe Botham, Owner of Baratxuri Restaurant (Ramsbottom)

My Fuego wood fired pizza oven...

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Joe Botham, Owner of Baratxuri Restaurant (Ramsbottom)
Claire & James, Owners of Thrush Nest Luxury Holiday Cottages (York)

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