less than 30 mins
30 mins to 1 hour
By Matt Tebbutt
From Saturday Kitchen
For the saffron aioli
- 1 free-range egg yolk
- 1 free-range egg
- 3 garlic cloves, crushed
- 200ml/7fl oz olive oil
- 1 lemon, juice only
- salt, to taste
For the baked rice and sardines
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 fennel bulb, cored removed, diced, fennel tops reserved
- 1 tsp fresh chopped thyme
- 1 beef tomato, finely chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- pinch saffron
- 100ml/3½fl oz white wine
- 50ml/2fl oz vermouth
- 200g/7oz arborio rice
- 1litre/1¾ pint hot fish stock
- 3 small whole sardines, cleaned and prepared
Preheat the oven to 180C/160C/Gas 4.
To make the aioli, put the egg yolk, egg and crushed garlic in a bowl and gradually whisk in the oil to form a mayonnaise. Add the lemon juice and stir well. Season with salt, to taste. Set aside.
To make the baked rice and sardines, heat the oil in a saucepan over a low heat. Add the onion, garlic and fennel, and fry until softened. Stir the thyme, tomato, bay leaf, saffron, wine and vermouth into the softened vegetables. Cook until the volume of liquid has reduced by half. Transfer to a lidded cast iron pan, add the rice and the hot stock, cover with the lid and cook in the oven for 10 minutes.
Remove from the oven, put the sardines on top of the hot rice, replace the lid and bake for another 10 minutes, or until the rice and sardines are cooked.
Serve the baked rice with the aioli and chopped fennel tops.