Sardines Simmered with Ginger

Sardines have a distinctive smell. Adding ginger or sour plum to the dish will reduce the smell.

Sardines Simmered with Ginger
Photographed by Shin Ebisu

Recipe by
Motokazu Nakamura






Calorie count is per serving.

Ingredients (Serves 2)

  • 12 - 15 sardines (150 g)

    Use 6-9 cm sardines

  • [A]

    • 100 ml sake
    • 100 ml water
  • 10 g ginger
  • Ginger (cut into thin strips) (as a garnish), as needed
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • Mayonnaise, to taste



Use your knife to scrape off the scales, if any, from the sardines, then cut off the heads. Run your finger along the inside of each to spread it open and completely wash out the innards under running water. Thinly peel the ginger and cut into thin rounds.


Place the sardines and the combined ingredients for [A] into a pot, and let sit for 10 min.


Heat the pot over medium heat and simmer for a few moments to cook off the alcohol.


Do not put a drop lid on top until the alcohol has cooked off. Do not add the ginger yet, either, because its flavor will also be cooked off if added this early.


Add the soy sauce and the ginger rounds, then cover with a drop lid. Simmer over medium-high heat until the liquid is almost completely cooked down. Taste the simmering broth and, if the flavor seems weak, add soy sauce. Serve with ginger strips and mayonnaise to taste.


When simmering blueback like sardines, use lots of seasonings. If you use small sardines, you can eat them bones and all.

To Store:
Can keep for about 2 days in the refrigerator.