Sardine Hash

Important definition – let’s be absolutely crystal clear from the get-go regarding what we mean with the “H” word here, mes amis….

Noun
hash (plural hashes)

  • Food, especially meat and potatoes, chopped and mixed together.

  • A confused mess

Right, now that we’ve cleared that potentially embarrassing source of confusion up, let us continue…

In terms of this dish, those two phrases are about as stunningly accurate as saying that the Sun is large, spherical, yellow, and rather hot. Food…chopped and mixed…confused mess… Indeed.

In the children’s classic book “The Wind in the Willows”, Mole and Rat find themselves facing the prospect of a hungry night at Mole End, until they happen across, amongst other things, a tin of sardines.

Not only are they a great “on-the-road” food, but sardines are also fantastic as a standby ingredient to have in at home “just-in-case” – I always have a tin or two lurking somewhere in my cupboards. Tonight was one occasion when I was glad that I did…!

I did not want to cook tonight, at any price – at the very outside I was up for a bit of chopping, cutting, and mixing. Likewise the thought of foraging at our local “super”-market left me cold. I went straight home from work, determined to make the best of whatever I could find hidden in the fridge and freezer.

As it turned out, I found some bits and pieces that just about worked together, well, at least well enough for me to want to finish eating it!

To go with my tin of sardines I found 4 spring onions, which were thinly sliced, greens and all, and put into the mixing bowl with the drained and flaked sardines. I luckily had a green chilli that needed using, so that was finely chopped before joining the fish and the spring onions. 

Next up, I found some forgotten but still serviceable green asparagus, which was trimmed and then lightly steamed (fret not, dearest reader, for t’was in a minimum-effort-involved microwave steamer bag!) for 2 minutes, before being cut into quarters. The tail end of a cucumber was roughly chopped, as were 2 medium sized tomatoes. Last but not least, I found half a savoy cabbage that would have to have been binned tomorrow, so after being thinly shredded it too was steamed, 3 minutes being enough for it to retain a bit of crunch, but still banish the chewy-blues.

Seasoning seemed best covered by a generous dusting of black and cayenne pepper. 

Giving this assemblage a good mix and a toss may well have helped along its flavour and texture a bit, but as sure as cute little brown baby bear cubs go potty round the back of the Redwoods, it certainly didn’t make it any more photogenic than it started out as, namely “not in the slightest”, hence no photo.

In fact, so un-photogenic was it, that not even Leonardo himself could have crafted a canvas capable of flattering it. This was, mes braves, no feast for the eyes, but rather a “cease and desist” order to the Hunger Demon. 

It worked! Mission accomplished! Hungry no more!

Lords, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, let’s hear a nice big round of applause for the humble sardine….! 

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