Ingredients for 6 jars: 5 kg fresh sardines scaled & filleted (or any other oily fish); 1,25 kg coarse salt; 4 litres white vinegar; 1 litre water; 1 jar whole cloves; 5 finely sliced chillies; 3 large carrots peeled & sliced; 60 ml peppercorns; 1 sliced cucumber; 6 bay leaves; red, green & yellow cocktail onions.
Method: Layer fillets in a basin to the rim, salting each layer. Cover and set aside in a cool place for 5 days. Rinse sardines in water and drain. Boil the vinegar and water, leave to cool and then add the mixture to cover sardines. Leave overnight. Drain and reserve. Roll up the sardines skin side out and secure with toothpicks.
Pour boiling water over the cloves, chillies, carrots, peppercorns, cucumbers and bay leaves. Layer these ingredients with the cocktail onions and rollmops in 500-gm sterilised jars. Fill jars with vinegar mixture, seal the lids. Store in fridge for 5 days minimum before tucking in. Serve with savoury biscuits.