When Heather at Fish is the Dish email me the content of the next fish delivery, she casually said "and oh!, I have added a few fresh sardines". NOOOOooo! "What am I supposed to do with sardines", he doesn't like them and they will stink the place down.
Reluctantly, I started to look at sardines recipes to soon discover that there is more to sardines than ....fishy taste and smell. The humble sardine is packed with Omega 3, known as "brain food."
Omega 3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids (good fat) vital to growth and development, we need them but we don't make them so they have to come from our food. However, we have to be careful here, as Omega 3 is fast being labelled "magic potion".
What has been scientifically proven so far: Omega 3 is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Omega 3 stimulates blood circulation. It may help lower risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. It plays a role in the reduction of bad cholesterol. It interacts with the immune system, healing traumatised and infected tissues so could help with skin problem. Here is what you need to know explained clearly by the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Omega 3 is found in fish which swim in cold waters. Salmon and Sardines are best sources. That was for the scientific bit, now you can relax here is the foodie bit.
Once gutted sardines can be eaten whole. In my opinion, they are much nicer filleted. To avoid a kitchen nightmare, ask your fishmonger to fillet them, don't even think of doing it yourself. Fresh sardines can be grilled, cooked in a pan or made into pâté
Sardines are full of taste so they will need herbs with a strong flavour, quick marinade in olive oil, salt, pepper and stuffed them with mint or thyme is probably best. If you barbecue them they will not need to be rolled in flour, I choose to pan them in oil with a squeeze of lemon juice, 3 minutes each side, so they needed to be coated with flour to stop them sticking to the pan.