Piquillo Pepper Salad with Sardines and Basil

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 15 min
  • Prep: 30 min
  • Inactive: 30 min
  • Cook: 15 min
  • Yield: 8 servings
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2 pounds small whole sardines, heads, tails and fins removed

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

3/4 cup olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

1 orange, juiced

1/4 cup chopped fresh oregano

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 (13-ounce) cans piquillo peppers, drained and chopped

2 tablespoons capers

1 small bunch fresh basil leaves, hand-shredded


  1. With a paring knife, cut the sardine in half, top to bottom, along the backbone. Arrange the sardines in a single layer, flesh side down, in a shallow dish. Mix together vinegar, oil, orange juice and oregano; pour over the sardines. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and let cure in the refrigerator for 30 minutes. Drain the sardines from the marinade, cut into chunks, and toss gently with piquillo peppers and capers. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with basil. Serve with plenty of grilled flat bread.