We love this balanced appetizer for summer entertaining. The fresh fennel salad balances the richness of the aioli and salty notes of the sardines. Enjoy seaside or to bring a taste of the salt life to your local table.
SHOPPING LIST:1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons Bella Cucina Sweet Pepper Pesto
1/2 teaspoon jarred Calabrian chili peppers (optional)
1/2 fennel bulb, cleaned and thinly sliced
1 cup watercress or arugula
1/2 lemon, juice & zest
1/2 teaspoon Bella Cucina Citrus & Fennel Salt1 baguette, 1/2-in thick slices
1/2 cup, plus 2 Tablespoon Bella Cucina Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tin Matiz sardines
In a small bowl, mix the mayonnaise, Bella Cucina Sweet Pepper Pesto, and chilis together until combined. Set aside.
Heat olive oil in a skillet. You should have enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Working in batches, toast baguette on each side until lightly browned.
To assemble, spread each crostini with sweet pepper aioli, top with fennel salad and a small piece of sardine. Garnish with reserved fennel fronds.