|We offer these recipes
as a help in adding to our prayer and experience of solidarity with the
poor during Lent.
Of course, they can be used at any time during the year.
Sardine sandwiches are a great Lenten fare. This fish which has been eaten by people world-wide who have lived by the sea for centuries, can unite us with these peoples as well as the people of Jesus' time, who often lived by the fruit of the sea.
Sardines are rich in Omega-3 fatty acids. They are a good source of protein, Vitamin B12, Calcium and Vitamin D. They are very low in contaminants, like mercury.
Today, they are most easily available in easy open cans - though in many coastal areas, they are available fresh or dried. In cans, they are commonly available in water, in olive oil, in a mustard sauce and in a tomato sauce.
It is very possible, on a day we are hoping to abstain from meat, or on the two fast days of Lent, to have a very simple lunch, or even a family dinner with sardine sandwiches. This can lead to a conversation about abstaining or fasting, and talk about solidarity with Jesus and his disciples, by the sea, or with many people around the world, who eat fish. We can also discuss the health benefits of this simple and delicious food.
A single can of sardines will make 2 or three sandwiches, depending on the size of the bread. The sandwiches can be open-faced and be eaten with the sardines alone, with their own oil, or with the sauce in the can, or with a mayonnaise or salad dressing. Lettuce, tomato, onions could be added.
After opening the sardine can, each sardine can be lifted out, with a fork, onto a plate, where it can be opened where it has usually be scored. When split in two, the central spine of the sardine will be revealed. It can then be easily removed and discarded. Now the sardine is ready to be arranged on the bread for the sandwich, along with drizzling some of the oil in the can over the fish.