As the price of seafood has skyrocketed, I've had to add cost to my list of concerns (wild vs. farmed, mercury content, etc.) when purchasing fish. I'll occasionally buy wild salmon, flounder and cod, but more and more of my seafood consumption revolves around canned sardines and jarred anchovies.
Both are wild, low in mercury, high in omega-3 fatty acids, relatively lower in price and really delicious, especially for those with a salty palate.
I'll include a couple of plain sardines as part of my "little-bit-of-everything" lunch, but some variety is nice. One option is sardine salad—think tuna salad—and I've hoodwinked people into thinking they are eating tuna. Add mayonnaise or yogurt, Dijon mustard, chopped parsley, scallions, shredded carrots, lemon juice, unrefined sea salt and fresh ground pepper; you (and your kids!) will never know the difference.
Another idea that I recently thought of was to put whole sardines in a bowl, add a little soy sauce and rice vinegar and allow the sardines to sit in the liquid for about 10 minutes (photo, above). Mix occasionally so the sardines can absorb some of the flavors and feel free to add some parsley and/or ginger and/or scallion to the concoction.
My favorite sardines, by far, are the wild California sardines in spring water from Wild Planet Foods. An added bonus is that Wild Planet's sardines are packed in BPA-free cans. Wild Planet also sells high-quality, sustainable canned tuna, salmon and shrimp. If your local store doesn't carry Wild Planet products, click here to order online.
(Reminder: I use all of the products I recommend, I do not accept free samples and I do not receive any commissions or payments for mentioning products. Sort of like some of our elected officials, but different.)