Serendipitous

What I see when I'm looking for something else.

Contemplating Sardines

The Curmudgeon at Large is compiling a Cookbook and one of his first selections is a menu that incorporates the nine food items that will help you to prevent a heart attack. He says that one of the foods is the Sardine.

2011-WineI can’t remember the last time I bought a tin of Sardines, but the thought of oily fish packed tightly in a tin made me curious about the current status of sardines in the world of the gourmet. Taking that one step further, what would be a sardine-wine pairing?  (Wine is also on the Curmudgeon’s list of heart healthy  foods) . The first web site that addressed this question was on a Chowhound discussion forum – What to drink with four year old sardines?  Apart from the suggestion that it might not be good to eat a tin of sardines of that age, the pairings included Maalox, Pepto-bismol, beer, sherry, and several white and red wines.

From there, I clicked on the link to The Society for the Appreciation of the Lowly Tinned Sardine.  This site artfully combines serious dedication to the fish with not so serious delivery of information.

Some of the great Chefs appear to be fond enough of the sardine to have figured out how to put it into a recipe. Jamie Oliver posts recipes for pizza, spaghetti and potato salad, while also paying tribute to the British favourite, sardines on toast.  Alton Brown kicks it up a notch (though not the way Emeril would)  in  a recipe for  Sherried Sardine Toast.

That is about all I can dredge up on the sardine. If there is anything else to be said about the sardine, I’m sure you will tell me!

It is much better to eat little fish like sardines directly from the ocean, rather than after they have been filtered through a larger predator.
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26 comments on “Contemplating Sardines

  1. dorannrule
    April 18, 2013

    Believe it or not, I just purchased two tins of sardines today. Really! Are we sending ESP via the internet? I hear they (sardines) are very high in protein and “good for you.” Besides, I like them sometimes on crackers. I have them for lunch. That’s all I can tell you about sardines, although I would like to sound more informative. :)

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      Yes, that is a coincidence!
      Sardines just don’t dwell in my pantry, but I suppose I should give them a second chance.

  2. Rose L.
    April 18, 2013

    I have fed sardines to my cats, but do not think of them as human food. More as bait!

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      My cat was a ‘tinned tuna’ cat – but only when I wanted to coax her into her carrying cage so I could take her to the vet.

  3. Mike Hardisty
    April 19, 2013

    Sardines, nice on the barbie or just plain grilled. The fresh ones though. Most of the big supermarket chains in the UK sell them at the fresh fish counter. I’m sure I heard somewhere that there had been a rebranding exercise to call sardines pilchards or was it the other way round

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      You have so many more fish choices in the UK than we have here in western Canada. I remember eating a fish called ‘John Dory’ in Scotland, and thinking it was wonderful. Same goes for the ‘Hamour’ we ate in the Middle East.

  4. Sardines always remind me of Saturday teatimes of my childhood when we had sardines on toast – toast made on our fire. I didn’t like sardines, but the choice was to eat them, or go hungry!

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      I expect many people of a certain age or a certain place have stories about food they had to eat – and not by choice!

  5. Margo Karolyi
    April 19, 2013

    Sardines on toast was one of my Dad’s favourite ‘go to’ meals when I was young; he used to let me ‘key open’ the tins. Just thinking about them has my olfactory glands working overtime (and my cats are edging closer – I think they can smell my memories). Thanks for the nudge!

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      I hope you and your cats enjoy your sardine feast!

  6. pegoleg
    April 19, 2013

    My Dad always liked sardines, so that made them a main entry on the list “Foods that only old men like”, which included buttermilk and bleu cheese. I took bleu cheese off the list when I grew up.

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      Bleu cheese – not my favourite either, but The Car Guy loves it. Maybe it is a guy thing.

  7. gingerfightback
    April 19, 2013

    Mash them into a jacket spud

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      Translation for those who are unfamiliar with a jacket spud – a baked potato, but preferably one with a light fluffy interior and crispy skin. They are very popular in the UK.

  8. Val
    April 20, 2013

    I have days when I can eat sardines happily and other days when I hate them. I always remember my mum’s sardine and vinegar sandwiches… urgh, not nice! But they’re a good snack sometimes. Given a choice, though, I prefer salmon.

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      Yes, I am a big fan of salmon too! One of my daughters lives on the West Coast and her husband loves to salmon fish. It is always a big treat when they bring a frozen salmon when they come for a visit.

  9. Cheryl
    April 21, 2013

    I ate sardines, and actually like them, as a kid, but don’t eat them anymore. My kids ate them when they were little with their grandfather. Sardines and ketchup on crackers. But they don’t eat them anymore either. The cat, on the other hand, loves them.

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      It is interesting how many different foods are coupled with ketchup!

  10. Lorna's Voice
    April 21, 2013

    Even before I became a vegan, I couldn’t even look at a sardine. What manner of person thought it sane and safe to pop one of those bait-looking things in one’s mouth? ;)

    • Margie
      April 21, 2013

      For some reason your comment made me think of Sushi. I have friends who can’t comprehend how anyone can pop sushi in their mouth either.

  11. Curmudgeon-at-Large
    April 23, 2013

    I like the last comment of your post:

    Many ideas, just like sardines, are better when consumed directly, rather than filtered through larger predators.

    • Margie
      April 23, 2013

      I guess that is why I enjoy reading blogs – no ‘big dog’ filters

  12. yearstricken
    April 24, 2013

    We often ate the dried variety in Japan. They make great stock and are delicious when fried in oil then sprinkled with soy sauce, some sugar, and sweet wine.

    • Margie
      April 24, 2013

      I just finished eating an interesting meal at a sushi restaurant – many types of fish I probably wouldn’t think of eating if I was left to my own devices. The Japanese certainly know what to do with fish!

  13. bronxboy55
    May 2, 2013

    When we were in Japan, my wife’s cousin ate sardines whole — head, eyes, everything. Is that how everyone eats them? I can’t think about this anymore.

    • Margie
      May 2, 2013

      I know how you feel – I don’t think I want to contemplate sardines again…

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This entry was posted on April 18, 2013 by in Cooking, Health Fitness and tagged , , .

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