I love sardines because eating them is environmentally friendly and healthy for you. I read on David Suzuki Foundation‘s website that they are “rich in calcium, protein, iron, omega-3 fatty acids and other healthy minerals”. Pretty cool! I also love them because sardine cans are very affordable. I usually wait for sales and buy them when they are $0.77 per unit. You can never have too many sardine cans, right? Well, my pantry seems to disagree with that last statement. I love sardines.. but I don’t really love eating them… I usually feed them to my dog Shiloh because she deserves a healthy shiny coat.

As I mentioned last week, though, I’m planning to start eating from my pantry in order to save some money and reduce the stockpiles (of sardine cans, among other items) I have accumulated over the last years.

If you don’t have a dog (of if she’s currently on an hydrolized protein diet because you suspect she might have a food allergy), here are a few recipes to use them up. Warning: You might end up liking them for real.

Sardine Fish Cakes (recipe from Chef Michael Smith‘s Fast Flavours: 110 Simple Speedy Recipes cookbook)

For 6 large (8 small) cakes, you’ll need:

  • 2 baking potatoes, cooked until tender
  • 4 cans of sardines, drained and mashed
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 C wheat germ or any flour (I personally grind my own flour made of ancient grains like Farro and/or Kamut)
  • vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter

In my own words, combine cooked potatoes, mashed sardines, sliced green onions, egg, mustard and pepper. You’re looking for a texture that will hold together when you shape the cakes. You can add flour to the mix to reach the desired consistancy, a small amount at a time. Shape the cakes and evenly coat in wheat germ/flour mixture. Add oil and butter to medium-high hot skillet. Brown cakes for 4-5 min on one side, flip them and cook for an additional 3-4 min. Ready to be eaten with your favorite tartar sauce and a garden salad!

Beer-Batter-Fried Sardines and Limes (Gourmet recipe found here)

For 1-2 servings, you’ll need:

  • 1/2 C light coloured beer
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 C flour
  • 3 cans sardines
  • 1 lime
  • enough vegetable oil to deep fry

In my words, heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high until thermometer indicates 375 F. Meanwhile, whisk beer, salt, and flour together. Carefully dredge and fully cover drained and dried sardines in the batter. Delicately drop small batches of sardines in the hot oil  and fry while stirring for 2-3 min or until golden brown. Transfer fried sardines onto paper towel. Fry lime wedges for 30 sec and transfer onto paper towel as well. Serve hot with your choice of sides. My husband loves fish and chips and didn’t notice he was eating sardines hehe.

*Frying oil can be reused for more frying and then upcycled into a homemade candle. I haven’t tried the candle thing yet but am planning to.

I think mashed sardines could also be great in paninis! Will have to try 🙂

Any other canned sardine recipes you like, Society?