Breaded sar­dines with ap­ple and kohlrabi salad

The Guardian Weekly - - Culture - By Thomasina Miers

Prep 15 min Cook 15 min Serves 4

In Septem­ber, I ate my first rib­ston pip­pin – the most de­li­cious ap­ple va­ri­ety I have tasted in a long time. It is said to have more vi­ta­min C than any other. The sweet, sher­bet flavour was so out­stand­ing that I bought a whole box. By go­ing to farm shops and farm­ers’ mar­kets and buy­ing dif­fer­ent va­ri­eties of ap­ples, not only do we save money and eat bet­ter but we en­cour­age bio­di­ver­sity and sup­port lo­cal farm­ers – it is just a win-win. Method Pour the beaten egg, bread­crumbs or panko and flour on to three plates. Dip the sar­dines first into the flour, shake off any ex­cess, then sub­merge in the eggs. Fi­nally, coat in the bread­crumbs, then put the fish on a clean plate and pop in the fridge.

Put all the tape­nade in­gre­di­ents, ex­cept for the le­mon juice, oil and a lit­tle of the dill, on a large chop­ping board. Chop un­til fine, then put in a bowl, add the le­mon juice and oil, and sea­son to taste. Put to one side.

Us­ing a man­do­line or sharp knife, finely slice the kohlrabi, ap­ple, red onion and radishes, and put in a salad bowl along with the wa­ter­cress. Pop in the fridge while you cook the sar­dines.

Pour 5cm of veg­etable oil in a wok or pan over a medium heat. Bring it up to 160C/325F.

Add three or four sar­dines at a time to the hot oil and fry for one or two min­utes, un­til golden, turn­ing over af­ter a minute or so. Trans­fer to kitchen pa­per to drain and fry the re­main­ing sar­dines, mak­ing sure you give the oil time to heat up be­tween batches. Keep the cooked ones warm in a low oven.

Dress the salad with the le­mon juice, oil and a lit­tle sea­son­ing, add the hazel­nuts and toss well. Serve along­side the sar­dines with the tape­nade spooned over and a sprin­kle of the re­main­ing dill.

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