Sardine is a sea fish of the Teleostei family belonging to the category of blue fish. Silvery color on the sides and dark on the back, it can reach 20 cm of length; its mouth is on the apex of the snout, a detail that differentiate it from the anchovy, which instead has the mouth on the lower side.
The sardine reproduces in the cold months as well as from March onwards. As it accumulates fat, it acquires a stronger flavour and in fact its meat is fatty and savoury. The largest quantities in Italy are fished usually at night using purse seines, with this method the sardines remain with all their scales intact.
Another technique, common in the upper Adriatic, is that with pelagic towing, in this case the sardine hits the meshes of the net, thus losing part of its scales and forming abrasions.
There are many traditional ways to cook sardines: breaded and then fried, stewed with tomato and parsley or, late in the season, grilled in the oven, so that in this way they lose some fat. Sardines are also preserved in oil.