Pea & Fennel Toasts with Sardines

Pea & Fennel Toasts with Sardines

1 Review
From: EatingWell Magazine, May/June 2018

Elevate simple toast with a green, veggie-loaded spread packed with mint, fennel and sweet English peas. One of these generously topped bruschetta-like toasts makes a great appetizer; two of them are perfect as a light lunch with a salad. Canned sardines and anchovies are delicious here, as are grilled fresh sardines if you can find them.

Ingredients 12 servings

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Original recipe yields 12 servings
Nutrition per serving may change if servings are adjusted.
  • Pea Puree
  • 2 cups fresh shelled English peas (from about 2 pounds unshelled) or frozen
  • 1 cup fennel fronds
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup packed fresh mint
  • 1 stalk green garlic (see Tips), chopped
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
  • Toasts
  • 6½-inch-thick slices pain au levain or whole-wheat country bread, cut in half
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil plus 2 teaspoons, divided
  • 2 lemons
  • 1 small fennel bulb, halved, cored and thinly sliced
  • Pinch each of kosher salt & pepper
  • 12 sardines and/or anchovies
  • ¼ cup fresh mint, cut into pieces or torn


  • Prep

  • Ready In

  1. To prepare puree: Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Set a bowl of ice water near the stove. Cook peas in the boiling water until tender, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to the ice bath until cold, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove the ice, then drain the peas in a colander. Let them stand until well drained, shaking the colander a few times, about 2 minutes.
  2. Transfer the peas to a food processor and add fennel fronds, ½ cup each oil and mint, green garlic, lemon juice, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Puree until slightly chunky, scraping down the sides once or twice.
  3. To prepare toasts: Position a rack in top third of oven; preheat broiler to high.
  4. Place bread on a baking sheet and brush both sides with 1 tablespoon oil. Broil until browned and crisp, about 2 minutes per side. Let cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Juice 1 lemon. Toss fennel with the juice, the remaining 2 teaspoons oil and salt and pepper. Spread 2 tablespoons of the pea puree on each toast. Divide the fennel among the toasts, lightly pressing it into the puree. Top each with a sardine (or anchovy). Top with mint. Cut the remaining lemon into wedges and serve with the toasts.
  • Tips: Green garlic, aka spring, new or young garlic, is garlic that hasn't fully matured. Look for bunches with long white or purple bases, intact roots and dark green leaves. Prep like a leek and use to give both a mild garlic and an onion flavor to salads, sauces, soups and pastas.
  • To make ahead: Refrigerate pea puree (Steps 1-2) for up to 1 day.

Nutrition information

  • Serving size: 1 toast
  • Per serving: 211 calories; 12 g fat(2 g sat); 3 g fiber; 20 g carbohydrates; 6 g protein; 29 mcg folate; 3 mg cholesterol; 2 g sugars; 0 g added sugars; 780 IU vitamin A; 21 mg vitamin C; 41 mg calcium; 1 mg iron; 406 mg sodium; 205 mg potassium
  • Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (35% daily value)
  • Carbohydrate Servings:
  • Exchanges: 1 starch, 1 vegetable, 2 fat

Reviews 1

July 02, 2018
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By: Katie
These were absolutely delicious. They looked so beautiful in the photos that I had to try them and they didn't disappoint. The mint makes them extra fresh tasting, the fennel lends a nice crunch, and the sardines add some salt and a bit more body. So easy to prepare and pretty to serve.
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