Food Recipe

Ajoblanco (Chilled Almond Soup) with Sardines

Ingredients —

1 cup toasted Marcona almonds
2 cups torn pieces of stale white bread, crust removed
2 cloves garlic
¼ cup Fino Sherry
¼ cup Sherry vinegar
1 cup water
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 sardine fillets
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup chickpea flour
whole Marcona almonds
8 green grapes, halved

Instructions —

For the soup:
Combine the first 6 ingredients and allow to macerate overnight. The next day, place all the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth, adding a little water to thin if necessary. With the blender running, slowly drizzle in the olive oil so that the combination emulsifies. Add salt to taste. Chill.

For the sardines:
Just before serving, season the sardine fillets with salt and pepper and lightly dust the skin side of the fillets with chickpea flower. In a non-stick pan, heat a teaspoon of olive oil over medium high. Add the fillets, skin-side down, and cook for about 2 minutes (until the flesh turns opaque); do not turn. Divide the soup into four bowls and top each with a sardine fillet. Garnish with almonds and grapes.

Pairing recommendation: A Fino Sherry, such as Tio Pepe, Osborne Pale Dry or El Maestro Sierra Fino

This recipe is featured in the print edition of the June 2009 issue.
 photo by Seamus Mullen's Hero Food
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