Bursting with bold fish flavours, this fancy fish supper makes an impressive starter.
8 slices sourdough bread, thinly sliced
50g/2oz sea purslane, blanched and refreshed
For the sardines and tomato sauce, heat a frying pan to medium-hot, add the oil and fry the garlic and shallot until softened, but not browned.
Add the vinegar to deglaze, then add the thyme leaves, tomatoes and sardines, and cook for ten minutes.
Pour into a blender, blend to a fine purée and then pass through a fine metal sieve back into a clean pan.
Place on the heat and cook again until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon - about 15 minutes.
Add little more olive oil, to taste, and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
For the tapenade, blend all of the ingredients in a blender with enough olive oil to form a fine purée. Tip into a bowl and place in the fridge to chill.
For the fish, heat a frying pan, add a little olive oil and the red mullet, skin-side down. Turn over after 1-2 minutes and cook for a further minute, or until cooked through. Season with salt, freshly ground black pepper and a squeeze of lemon juice.
To serve, toast the bread, spread the tapenade over the toast and place in the centre of each plate. Put the red mullet on top of the toast and then drizzle the sardine sauce over the plate and garnish with the blanched sea purslane.
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