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Crumbed Cheesy Pilchard Pockets

Makes 12

Hands-on time: 30 minutes

Hands-off time: 20 minutes


12 slices white bread

1 can (400g) Lucky Star Pilchards in Tomato Sauce

3 tbsp mayonnaise

1 cup grated cheddar cheese

½ tsp each salt and pepper, to season

2 eggs, beaten

Serving suggestion:

Fresh coriander sprigs

Sweet chilli sauce


1. Neatly remove the crusts from the bread slices and pulse them in a food processor or blender until it resembles coarse crumbs. *Chef’s Tip: If you don’t have a food processor then use the coarse side of your grater to grate the crust into crumbs.

2. Pour the bread crumbs into a dry pan over a medium-low heat and stir until lightly toasted, about 2-3 minutes.

3. Using a rolling pin, roll each crustless bread slice into a square and set aside.

4. Remove the Lucky Star Pilchards in Tomato Sauce from the tin and keep the sauce. Using a fork, remove and discard the bones from the pilchards. Add the pilchards to a medium bowl. *Chef’s Tip: Removing the bones is optional.

5. Add ¼ cup of the tomato sauce from the tin and the mayonnaise to the pilchards. Sprinkle in the grated cheese and season with salt and pepper. Mix the pilchard filling gently to maintain some sizeable chunks of the pilchards in the mixture.

6. Lightly wet your finger with water and dab the edges of the bread slices. Place 1 heaped tablespoon of the cheesy pilchard-mayo into the centre of each slice of bread.

7. Bring the 2 opposite edges of the slice together and pinch the sides together to make a seal, making each one into a rectangle. *Chef’s Tip: Use a fork to seal the edges!

8. Carefully dip each bread pocket in the beaten egg, followed by the homemade breadcrumbs.

9. Add the coated bread pockets to the airfryer, cooking in batches of 6 for 10 minutes, turning halfway, at 180˚C or until golden and crisp. *Chef’s Tip: If you don’t have an airfryer, you can deep-fry the pockets for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden.

10. Pack the cheesy pilchard pockets onto a large serving board. Scatter over fresh coriander sprigs, serve with sweet chilli sauce and ENJOY!

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