Budget friendly, sustainable and insanely good for you! A tin of sardines is the unsung star of the store cupboard, an arsenal for breakfast, lunch and dinner possibilities. They may be a tiny fish but they pack a nutritiously-dense punch!
A tin of sardines is a hand grenade of healthy stuff for your body, the most impressive being the amount of Omega-3 that’s crammed into that pocket-sized tin. One can of sardines contains over half of the recommended daily dose of Omega-3, which helps to reduce inflammation in the body, the risk of heart disease, enhance the functioning of immune cells and boost brain power!
Here’s three simple, quick ways to use sardines for breakfast, lunch and dinner:
Sardines on Toast for Breakfast
A taste of the med. Pimp further with a a sliced soft boiled egg on top for an extra protein boost.
Heat a dash of olive oil in a frying pan, chuck in a chopped garlic clove, a deseeded, chopped red chilli and the zest of a lemon. Add a drained tin of sardines to the pan and heat through until warm. Whilst you’re doing this, toast a couple of slices of bread and pile on the warm sardines. Drizzle with an extra glug of olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice and small handful of chopped parsley.
Sardine Potato Salad for Lunch
This lighter potato salad uses a yoghurt dressing instead of a mayonnaise-based one. A perfect BBQ side or a filling lunch.
Boil a handful of new potatoes in salty water. Make a salad dressing by placing a 1/3 cup of natural yoghurt, 2 tablespoons of white or red wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, a pinch of seasoning and some chopped dill (if you have it) into a jam jar. Put the lid on jar and shake well. Drain the potatoes, leave to cool slightly, toss in the salad dressing, gently stir through some rocket leaves and flake in a tin of drained sardine fillets.
Pasta Con le Sarde for Dinner
A quick, easy and simpler version of the classic Sicilian pasta dish. This dish is a good way to use up old bread and pantry finds.
Bring a large pot of salty water to boil. Heat a glug of olive oil in a medium pan. When it’s hot, add 1/2 a cup of bread crumbs and stir frequently until golden and toasty smelling – remove as soon as cooked. Add another glug of olive oil to the same pan along with a finely chopped onion and cook until softened. Meanwhile, add around 400-500g spaghetti and cook until just tender. Add a teaspoon of lemon zest, 2 tablespoons of capers and two tine of drained sardines to the onions – turn the heat down and cook until just heated through. Add the pasta to the sardine mixture, along with most of the breadcrumbs and toss to combine. Loosen with a dash of pasta water if necessary and adjust the seasoning to your liking. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, the remaining bread crumbs.
Once a humble, classic kitchen cupboard staple, tinned sardines have now had a renaissance with artisan food stores stocking their shelves with beautifully packaged, collector-worthy tins. Here’s a gallery of beautiful tiny designs.