Cannery Row Cuisine: Sardines

Yes, yes the toro sashimi was wonderful: a delightful mouthfeel and delicate flavor. However, what left a bad taste in my mouth was finding toro on the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s “sushi to avoid” list. It was good but it wasn’t so good that I need to keep eating that sort of endangered fish just so I can enjoy a nice mouthfeel sensation. The world is full of other things to eat so I’m passing on toro, for sure, until it moves off the avoid list.

fresh sardines deboned and prepared for cooking

mmm, sardines

There’s lots of other fish in the sea. It seems a good idea to eat more of the abundant types and less of the threatened species. One solution is to become reacquainted with that ubiquitous fish that filled so many tins at Monterey’s canneries: sardines. Check out some of these recipes and see where, gastronomically speaking, sardines can take you. And ask yourself: what would Steinbeck eat?

A Culinary Comeback For The Lowly Sardine?” by David Gorn for NPR

Sea Change: How to Make Sustainable Seafood Choices at the Fish Market” by Carl Safina


Tomato Toast with Sardines & Mint by Barton Seaver

Greek Salad with Sardines

photo: Dan Albro

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