Sardine in Saor

September 15, 2022

Sardines in saor is a rustic Italian recipe from Jacob Kenedy, chef-patron of Bocca di Lupo, that makes a perfect starter or antipasti plate.

Sarde in saor is a dish of sweet and sour sardines that originates in the Veneto region. The fish is prepared with onions, pine nuts, and raisins

Why do people like Saor

A symphony of sweet and sour, crispiness and softness. You must have heard of this Italian appetizer at least once in your life: I’m talking about the Venetian Style Marinated Sardines or Sarde in Saor!

It can be prepared either for special occasions, such as the Redentore Festival in July, or for convivial meals with family and friends: any moment will do!

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Ingredients that go into Saor

  • 75g raisins (optional)
  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 500g onions
  • 75g pine nuts (optional)
  • 175ml red wine vinegar
  • 500g small sardines, scaled, gutted, rinsed and patted dry
  • Plain flour, for dusting
  • 2 tbsp olive oil

How to cook Saor

  1. Put the raisins, if using, in a bowl of warm water and leave to soak for 20 minutes. Heat the extra-virgin olive oil in a saucepan over a low heat. Cut the onions into thin half-moons and add to the pan with a pinch of salt. Cook for 10-15 minutes until soft but not coloured. Add the pine nuts and raisins, if using (use neither or both), and remove from the heat. When cool, add the vinegar.
  2. Season the sardines with salt and lightly dust in some flour. Heat the olive oil in a pan over a high heat and fry the sardines in batches for 2 minutes on each side. Their skin should colour a little, but the flesh should still be raw near to the bone.
  3. Place the fish in a large dish, in a single layer, with the onions and vinegar. Cover and chill for at least a day (if possible 2-3 days) before eating. You will need to turn the fish once or twice in the marinade.

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What can Saor be served together with

Serve this characteristic fish appetizer with a glass of chilled Pinot Grigio, Tocai, or Prosecco.

Other popular Italian food

Besides Saor, there are other Italian food dishes that are highly popular in Singapore and around the world. Below is a list of some of the most mentioned ones:

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