Marinated Australian Sardines Fried in a Crisp Coating

Recipes | Marinating | Pan-Frying Serves 4 as an entrée Marinated Australian Sardines Fried in a Crisp Coating

The strong tasting canned variety has given sardines a bad name with some people. They are an oily fish, high in healthy omega-3s and they do have a distinctive flavour, but the ginger and lemon juice marinade helps to cut through this, making this a good dish for people who are hesitant about eating sardines.


¼ cup lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon grated ginger
12 Australian Sardines, butterflied
¾ cup plain flour 
Salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
2 eggs, lightly beaten with 2 tablespoons of water
2 cups fresh fine breadcrumbs (see notes)
Vegetable oil, for shallow-frying
1 lemon, quartered
1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved, to serve


Combine lemon juice, garlic and ginger and use to marinate fish for 20-30 minutes. Then drain fish well and pat dry with paper towel.

Place flour, paprika, salt and pepper in a large freezer bag, add the fish and shake well to coat. Place fish in a colander and shake well to remove excess flour. Dip into egg mixture, then roll in breadcrumbs. 

Heat oil in a frying pan and shallow-fry the fish for a minute or 2 each side, until crisp and golden.

Serve with lemon quarters and tomatoes.


To make fresh breadcrumbs, pulse day-old bread in a food processor until finely crumbed. It’s a great way to use up stale bread and you can keep them in the freezer to use whenever breadcrumbs are required.

Alternative species:

Mullet, Eel, Tailor, Australian Salmon.

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