Posts Tagged recipes

Sep 19 2013

Small fish bring big menu opportunities

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Despite their reputation as oily, smelly, fatty and usually packed in a tin, there’s lot to like about anchovies, sardines and smelt. They’re extremely flavorful, loaded with healthy omega-3s and abundant in our oceans. And while small fish are found most often on menus in Caesar salads, atop pizzas or inside sushi rolls, lately more chefs are using them in appetizers or entrees.

According to Datassential MenuTrends, 21 percent of all restaurant menus feature at least one variety of small fish, an increase of 2 percent since 2009. They can be found most often at fine-dining restaurants, where 36 percent of menus feature a small fish. Anchovies, appearing on 19 percent of menus, are the most common small fish offered by restaurants.

Their rarity on menus, along with and their distinct flavor, is precisely why chef Joe Realmuto loves to put anchovies, sardines and smelts on the menu at Nick & Toni’s East Hampton and Nick & Toni’s Café in New York City.

Read the full article here.


Aug 17 2013

Anchovies are moving out of the can and into the mainstream as chefs and grocers embrace them

Seafood News
SEAFOOD.COM NEWS [Canadian Press] – August 16, 2013 – Maligned and misunderstood, anchovies have long been those stinky little fish that sneak into Caesar salad or top some adventurous person’s pizza.

“My father would eat them out of a can,” says New Orleans restaurateur and TV chef John Besh. “If Dad was going hunting, he’d grab a can of smoked oysters or anchovies and crackers and that would be his lunch.”

But today, chefs like Besh have moved anchovies to the top of the food chain, showcasing them as elegant bar snacks, sophisticated bruschetta or the foundation for pasta dishes and stews.

“They make friends and enemies quickly,” says Seamus Mullen, chef-owner of Tertulia in New York City. “A bad anchovy is not a good thing. It’s a question of making sure you get the right ones.”

Getting the “right” anchovies has become much easier in recent years. The mushy, salty tinned anchovies eaten by Besh’s father are still out there. But more and more, the shelves of gourmet stores and upscale supermarkets offer high-quality anchovies preserved in olive oil, pickled in vinegar or sometimes even fresh.

More menus feature items such as “boquerones,” white anchovies, often dressed with vinegar. Fresh anchovies might be cooked over a wood fire or dressed with breadcrumbs and garlic. Sometimes, anchovies go undercover.

Besh uses them as what he calls “nature’s MSG,” melting them into beef daube and lamb stew to intensify the savory flavours.

Nick Stefanelli, executive chef at Bibiana Osteria-Enoteca in Washington, D.C., uses them to make an ancient Roman fish sauce called garum.

“One of the most classic pasta dishes is spaghetti with fish sauce, garlic and chilies,” says Stefanelli, who includes the dish on his tasting menus. “The product itself really takes it where it needs to be… It’s so simple and beautiful.”

Anchovies have been a staple of Italian, Spanish and Provencal French cooking for centuries. French and Italian country stews use them to provide umami, a sense of meatiness and depth. They are made into marinades and tapenades, tossed into pasta and mixed with garlic, breadcrumbs and parsley to stuff vegetables, such as peppers and eggplant. In Spain, they are among the finest tapas.

Read the full article here.

Apr 19 2011

How to Make Sardines in Olive Oil

eHow contributer Chelsea Hoffman recently posted steps to make sardines in olive oil.

1) Add the sardines to the canning jar. A full cup of sardines is close to 1/4 of a lb. Purchase your sardines fresh from a reliable source, making sure they’ve been properly cleaned before canning them.

2) Pour the olive oil into you canning jar. Add the carrots, onion, garlic and optional crushed red pepper to the jar. The crushed red pepper will give the sardines a spicy bite.

3) Secure the lid on the canning jar and shake the solution for a few seconds to mix the ingredients together.

4) Put the stockpot, half full of water, on the stove and bring it to a rolling boil. Place the jar into the pot. Let the water boil over the jar for 30 minutes. Not only does this cook the ingredients, but the hot water will seal the jar, making it airtight. This is known as a “hot water bath,” when canning foods.

5) Turn off the stove and remove the hot jar from the water, using the canning tongs. Sit the can on your counter and allow it to cool to room temperature. This takes up to eight hours, or sometimes more, depending on the temperature of the environment.


Apr 11 2011

Recipe: Broiled Sardines With Lemon and Thyme

By Mark Bittman, The New York Times

FOR years, the only kind of sardines available to the average American were packed in oil, water or tomato sauce, sold in little rectangular cans, first with keys and later with pop-tops.

But because they’re plentiful and not endangered as a species (and full of healthful omega-3 fatty acids), fresh sardines are enjoying something of a renaissance. It helps that they’re delicious and inexpensive.

You’re likely to see them on the menus of fancy restaurants, usually as appetizers and usually “grilled.” I use quotation marks because what restaurants advertise as grilled sardines are usually broiled, for two reasons. One is that few restaurants are equipped to do real grilling. The other is that it’s extremely difficult to grill a sardine. Their flesh is so fragile they fall apart. (Wrapping them in grape leaves or paper-thin prosciutto slices is an option, but that process is a pain and decidedly unnecessary.)

Read the rest at the New York Times.