Nutritional information,  Savoury

Roasted sardines with orange and white wine and round and round the roundabout

This summer we visited every single roundabout in France. At least that’s what it felt like; I had never realised just how many roundabouts had sprung up over France until our trip at the beginning of August. I also hadn’t realised just how chatty — and boundlessly repetitive — our satnav lady had become. Bizarrely, she speaks with a very thick Belgian accent which Luc never tires of imitating. This is extremely unhelpful when you’re trying to work out which way to go. The unfortunate combination of Luc’s caricatures and left-right dyslexia, and my innate inability to obey instructions without lengthly debate, meant that Mrs Satnav spent most of the trip saying ‘faites mi-tour dès que possible’ (do an U-turn as soon as possible). At one point we even found ourselves on the motorway headed back in the direction we had come from.
Still on the subject of turning, several people have fallen off their horses on our land recently, which means that we recuperate either riderless horses or horseless riders. We had two riderless horses this week alone, and yesterday we were visited by a handsome Iberian horse called ‘Diablo’ (Devil), who apparently likes to live up to his name. We managed to track down his rider who was still spitting sand, muttering obscenities and wearing the filthiest pair of white jodhpurs I’ve ever seen. He explained, with a perfectly straight, if rather grubby, face that his problem was that he ‘topples over’ every time his horse changes direction. You couldn’t make it up could you? He seemed to be at his wits’ end so I desperately tried to make a few helpful suggestions, but in all honesty, the best I could come up with was that he take up pétanque or watercolours instead…
Sardines are an ideal source of omega 3 as they contain less mercury than larger fish. They also contain generous amounts of B vitamins, calcium, selenium and phosphorus. Sardines provide both EPA and DHA fatty acids which are useful in reducing inflammation. This improves hearth health, brain function, mood disorders like depression and anxiety, ADHD, various types of cancer, arthritis, etc.
Ingredients (serves 4)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 red onion, peeled and sliced
1 orange, peeled, divided into segments and cut into thumb-sized pieces
4 medium potatoes, peeled, cut and pre-cooked
1 garlic clove, crushed
6 fresh sardines (gutted and heads removed)
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon paprika
Sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper
1 glass white wine
Basil leaves to garnish
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a large roasting dish with olive oil and add the  onion, orange, potatoes and garlic. Coat everything with the olive oil. Place the sardines on top of the vegetables and sprinkle the seasoning over the top. Pour the glass of dry white wine over the top and roast for 15 minutes. Garnish with a few basil leaves and serve.


  • Darya

    Ah! I love laughing at navigators: I spent three days driving around Tuscany with an Italian-only speaking navigator, it was quite fun, and good practise, until it became boring and repetitive. I hardly ever cook fresh sardines, though I love them. I would be curious to try the combination with orange, it sounds really good.

  • kellie anderson

    We used to have an “Irish voice” satnav that we called Chauncey for some reason. He had a lovely voice that we fondly imitate even now. I rarely use the satnav but it is invaluable when it is called upon to get us from A to hidden and bewildering B. I also rarely eat sardines but your recipe is making me want to get to the fishmongers for a sack to make up this summery dish. Delish!

    • The Healthy Epicurean

      I rarely use the satnav either, particularly as it’s not very up to date and isn’t aware of many new roads and roundabouts! I always buy sardines if I see them – they’re so easy and tasty. You get a real bang for your buck! 🙂

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