Sunday, 12 May 2013

How to Gut, Clean and Bone a Sardine

Sardines are a much underrated fish in my view; people tend not to eat them because they are bony.

You can get most of the bones out if you follow the guidelines below, although not all, you will be left with a small amount of the very small hair like bones, a small price to pay for a very tasty fish that is full of goodness.

Sardines like most fish are best eaten on the day of purchase, if you are lucky enough to live near a fishing port; then straight from the boat and onto the griddle or barbecue is an unbelievable experience.

When I was camping in the south of France a few years ago I did just that, I went to the harbour and bought all kinds of fish and took them straight back to the barbecue I had never tasted such wonderful fish before or since.

OK here we go:-

First off, cut off the head below the gills.

Place the point of your knife into the tail end at the bottom of the stomach and run it all the way to where the head was.

You will find that a lot of the guts will come out with your knife. Now put your thumb down the middle and butterfly it.

Take hold of the back bone right up close to the tail and snap it then pull it out along with most of the bones. Open out the fish and scrape all the dark bits away with your knife, then trim off the edges and cut off the tail.

Turn the fish over and locate the fin that’s around the middle of the back and cut it off, wash any scales from the skin and you are ready for cooking.

Barbeque, griddle or fry, I pan fried these for my breakfast, they only need about 4 minutes on a high heat.

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