Sardines are a wonderful fish. They are packed full of health-enhancing Omega 3 essential fatty acids – containing more than both tuna and salmon. The fresh ones are fast and easy to cook. They're cheap and being low on the food chain, sardines are also low in mercury. Plus, because they reproduce rapidly, most populations are relatively abundant and well managed
The only problem with the fresh fish, is they're sold whole and so you need to scale and gut them before cooking. If you have a good relationship with your fishmonger they might
do it for you, but sardines are cheap so they often say no.
While it might sound difficult, preparing sardines is easy and only takes a few minutes.
- If you don't like getting your hands dirty, wear rubber gloves. And if you're squeamish you can also remove the head, but this isn't necessary.
- Place your sardines on a chopping board and rub the back of a knife over each fish, to remove any scales.
- Hold a sardine in one hand, with its belly facing upwards. With a small sharp knife slice open the entire length of its underside.
- Open the gut cavity slightly with one hand and then you'll be able to easily pull out the intestines with your fingers.
- Wash the whole fish under the tap and pat dry with kitchen paper. Your sardine is ready to use.
Sardines are such a great food and so cheap, I'll be including them in one of my budget celebration meals
, later in the week.