Sardines on Toast (…the posh version)

Sardines on Toast (…the posh version)

December 2, 2014

Quivertree

Daisy Jones fish food recipe seafood Star Fish

  Remember sardines on toast? That quick fix meal for lazy Sunday evening dinners or quick lunches? As one of the stars of Daisy Jones’s Star Fish Top 10 Sustainable Fish, Jones gave these wonderful oily, nutritious citizens of the … Continued

 

Remember sardines on toast? That quick fix meal for lazy Sunday evening dinners or quick lunches? As one of the stars of Daisy Jones’s Star Fish Top 10 Sustainable Fish, Jones gave these wonderful oily, nutritious citizens of the sea the same kind of care and treatment you might usually associate with your more lauded seafood like prawns or salmon. When it boils down to it, that really is the crux of Daisy’s book: to respect and enjoy the delicious seafood that we can eat sustainably. Those members of SASSI’s green list like sardines, anchovies, haddock, snoek and farmed trout and kabeljou that we as consumers might not be that au fait with cooking. With Daisy doing the hard work of testing and refining excellent recipes for these sustainable fish, there really is no space for excuses around why we don’t choose these options (whether you used to claim it was due to your ignorance or their flavour).

Daisy says, “I also call this ‘posh sardines on toast’. Crushed sardines are spread onto hot toast in the usual student digsy kind of way, but with the addition of cream cheese, mustard, cayenne and lemon juice. It’s almost a pate. The violet and green-flecked pickled onion – sweet, warm and tart all at the same time – elevates the grey mush on toast to something quite designer. I think this recipe would do well on the pages of a décor mag: the layering of slate grey and ‘biscuit’ with magenta accents and a shot of forest green might be considered Scandinavian in inspiration. Just saying.”

Check out the recipe below and get this essential book from all good bookstores. Also available online from kalahari.com.

Sardines and pickled red onion on toast

 
serves 2
 
for the sardines:
2 x 100g flat cans sardines in oil, preferably smoked Brisling
1 tsp English mustard
1 tbsp cream cheese 
a generous pinch of cayenne pepper
fresh lemon juice, to taste
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 slices dense handmade bread, preferably sourdough
 
for the sweet pickled red onion:
1 tbsp olive oil, for frying
1 small or ½ large red onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp caster sugar
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp small capers, drained
1 heaped tbsp chopped fresh parsley
First make the pickled onion. (The way the onions are done here is similar to the way they’re done for traditional Cape pickled fish, another reason to like this dish.) Heat the oil in a non-stick pan, then add the sliced onion and cook gently, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes. The onion should be tender, but not coloured. Add the sugar, vinegar and capers, and stir through. Remove from the heat and add the parsley.
 
Put your toast in. Then make the sardine pate like this: remove the little sardines from their oil and mash in a flat dish. Add the mustard, cream cheese, cayenne pepper and lemon juice. Check for seasoning, it shouldn’t need much – if any. The fish is salty and there is heat in the mustard and cayenne pepper. Press the sardine pate roughly onto the toast with a fork.
 
Now arrange the pickled onion on top. This dish goes well with a cup of tea and an architecture journal.

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