Nigel Slater's grilled salad of tomato and sardines recipe

The summer rolls on, so shift some of the cooking out of doors with this tasty salad

Peppers, tomatoes and spring onions work well on the barbecue and can be tossed together with just a few other ingredients to make a main course salad.

The recipe

Warm a grill or griddle pan. Slice 6 large spring onions in half lengthways and toss them in a little olive oil. Brush 200g of bottled, skinned roasted peppers with olive oil. Drain a tin of sardines in olive oil and set aside.

Place the peppers and onions on the griddle then add 12 cherry tomatoes, letting them cook till lightly blistered, turning the peppers and spring onions over as they colour. Place the peppers, tomatoes and spring onions on plates. Tuck the sardines among them with a few basil leaves, lightly crushed.

Tear 2 thick slices of sourdough bread into pieces and toast them in a shallow pan on the griddle till golden. Toss them with a little olive oil and add to the salad. Serves 2

The trick

Make this on the barbecue or use a griddle pan indoors. If you use a barbecue put the tomatoes on a piece of foil so they don't fall through the grill. I sometimes make a basil oil by blitzing basil leaves and stems with olive oil in a blender then dressing the salad with that.

The twist

For a richer flavour, cook the peppers from scratch: grill raw, red bell peppers on all sides till the skin blisters and blackens. Put the charred peppers into a plastic bag, seal and let them steam for 10 minutes, then peel off the skin and the peppers are ready, imbued with a sweet smokiness. Instead of sardines, use canned tuna or smoked mackerel.

Email Nigel at or visit for all his recipes in one place. Follow Nigel on Twitter @NigelSlater

Powered by article was written by Nigel Slater, for The Observer on Tuesday 10th June 2014 12.00 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010