Category Archives: sardines

Sardine Sandwiches


How have I never made sardine sandwiches before? I didn’t even think such a wonderful thing was possible until last month – normally I’ve just had sardines straight up, from the can, probably on crackers.

This sardine sandwich includes a nice spicy yellow mustard, a squirt of lemon juice, chopped cucumber, black pepper, and slices of tomato. I’m eating it on a whole wheat hamburger bun because that’s the only bread in the house – honestly, I don’t really eat a whole lot of bread, especially lately. Not to be all 1980s diner-diet-menu, but I think this would be delicious served without bread and inside of a hollow tomato.  If I were a little less hungry and a little more thoughtful I would have put in a pinch of chopped fresh dill.

I used Season Brand sardines, in water, no salt added, and found in the deepest darkest corner of my cupboard. These sardines may be 4 years old. I will report back if that is an issue. Hey, they’re from Morocco! I didn’t know that!
I’m not sure if it was the brand of sardines or the water pack, but I noticed that the sardines mashed so easily with a fork – much easier than tuna – and didn’t have nearly the fishy flavor that tuna does. Why on earth are sardines so scary to people? Sardines are nicer for the environment and can have a much more delicate fish flavor than your traditional albacore.

The sandwich was delicious. Wish you were here! I ate yours, though. Sorry, I didn’t think it would keep.

why sardines are the best.

treehugger just posted a synopsis of a study indicating that one in every four new yorkers has elevated blood mercury levels. The most interesting part is how it seems to be closely linked to fish consumption. which, as you all know, brings me to that subject that all roads at karinajeandotcom end at: sardines. I’ve said before that I love sardines for a number of reasons. I don’t know, though, if I have ever said that mercury is a tricky little guy: it sneaks through the placenta and right into a fetus. Actually, not to be flip about things, but I’ve read that the best way for a woman to reduce her body burden of mercury is to have a baby because that’s the surest way to make sure the mercury will leave your body. which is horrible! and really scary for women who want to or who are having babies!

if you’re concerned or curious about your mercury burden, you can purchase a testing kit from greenpeace (like I did!).  you won’t be included in the study (it was completed in 2006) but it’s still a cheap and easy way to do some science on your head.

Season Sardines

last week I ran a 10K so the week before that (and the one before THAT) i was running 4 or 5 times a week. I had to increase my protein to Super High levels! one of the ways I did this was by eating lots of hard boiled eggs. Another way was to eat some sardines:


Season sardines were purchased at my local grocery store. They’re in olive oil – I used to eat sardines in water, but I don’t know if it’s worth it any more, really. the ones in oil are so much better.

when you crack open the tin you notice that there are three large pieces of fish in the tin. That’s it – just three big steaky pieces of sardine. no second layer, just hunks of fish. They were really good – kind of fishy, but heck, they’re sardines – but it was hard to break up these steaky sardines to eat on crackers (my preferred method). So on the one hand, it was a real novelty to eat such a large piece of tinned fish, on the other hand I was eating in a recliner and it was a messy process and I got fish oil on my skirt and had to wash it. They were good though! I would buy them over other brands.

King Oscar Sardines

My friend Lorelei raved to me about king oscar brand sardines so I had to get them. She even has a little rhyme, which I can’t remember for the life of me. I hadn’t ever tried them before because they don’t seem to come in flavors in my grocery stores, just oils and water. here is a terrible photo of the can wrapping:


the back says something about the sardines being caught in the sparkling fjords of norway. if you should know anything about me, it’s that I love fjords. I love the word, the concept, and the potential for harnessing the power of the sea as it rushes in and out of the fjords. so these sardines are, apparently, for me. the website also points out that the more fish in a can indicates the higher quality. so I shouldn’t have been so impressed when I popped the fish can open and found these lovely morsels waiting for me:


they were so beautifully even and glowing with good sardiney health! I was amazed. the tasted awfully good, too. I have to admit that these were my first sardines in olive oil, and it was awfully great. this, however, was the exciting part:


look! a little tail! some of you might find this nasty or gross, but to me it indicates a sardine that was packed with extreme care and gentleness. usually there isn’t a tail and the sardine is kind of messed up in the can. these sardines were firm yet tender, and had wee fish parts still on them. the spines weren’t too bony or crunch either, which is always a good thing.

so, I would say that lorelei is 10,000% percent. king oscar sardines ARE the best. these were superawesome, and I would highly recommend.

why I love sardines

I started loving the sardines b/c they go on crackers, and they are tinned fish. you can say canned fish, but tinned fish is much more exotic and dare I say classy.

and then I realized there are lots of thinking-person reasons to eat sardines, you know, reasons that do not rely on gut level preconceived notions of what is classy or not. and they include:

The only thing that I do NOT love about sardines is that I can’t bring them to work for lunch. they are not an office-friendly food. sad!


I eat a lot of sardines in the winter – probably because they go so well with crackers, aka, my favorite food ever. so I thought maybe I should blog about sardines. initially I thought this should be part of the fish sandwiches blog, because now that I don’t live in pittsburgh I don’t eat a lot of fish sandwiches, but upon further thought I have decided that no, sardines deserve their own category. Commencing STAT.

Last night I had some Brunswick sardines in a mustard dill sauce.


the wrapper comes off and there is a boring tin underneath:


but once you open the tin, the mustard sauce is totally exciting and scary looking:


scary or not, though, it is so tasty. it’s more of a yellow mustard (obviously) taste than a spicy mustard, and the dill is so subtle as to be not noticable, but it goes very well with the fish.

The sardine pieces are kind of giant, too:


I prefer my sardines a little less SO BIG but they were good. I didn’t take any pictures of the little bones because that part is kind of gross and I try to pop them into my mouth quickly, but the spines are very big and obvious. so these sardines, while very tasty, might not be for the beginning eater-of-sardines.