Broiled Sardines with Stewed Tomatoes and Eggplant

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Ingredients:

  • About a pound of gutted, head on sardines
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced
  • a handful of thyme
  • 1 large eggplant, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 lb. tomatoes, coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
  • ghee or olive oil
  • fresh mint for serving
  • salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 425 F.
  2. Arrange eggplant slices on a foil lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with olive oil. Cook in oven for 20 minutes.
  3. Remove from oven and fold foil over itself, sealing the edges to create a package. Set aside and allow to steam for 15 minutes or so.
  4. Turn oven up to broil.
  5. Meanwhile, add ghee or oil to a large heavy pot, melt and bring to a shimmer.
  6. Add tomatoes and cook for about 15 minutes, until tomatoes darken in color and cook down quite a bit.
  7. Add eggplant to the tomatoes along with the molasses. Cover and stew for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  8. While the mixture is stewing, wrap a slice of lemon around a couple of thyme sprigs and stuff inside a sardine. Repeat with all the sardines.
  9. Heat a cast iron skillet over a high flame. Once the skillet is hot, add sardines and transfer to broiler. Broil 6 – 8 minutes until nicely browned.
  10. Transfer everything to platters; garnish the tomatoes and eggplant with fresh mint and squeeze fresh lemon and sprinkle fresh thyme over sardines.
  11. Eat immediately.

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