Real food lovers eat tinned fish
Unless I have leftover pasta in the fridge, I’m not usually excited about my weekday lunch options. Anything I make needs to take 5 minutes or less, and chopping veggies is off the table — which is why I usually turn to whatever’s in my pantry.
My mom taught me the importance of a well-stocked pantry. She’s able to whip up full meals JUST using what’s lying around in her pantry. She has an overwhelming amount of beans, pasta, grains galore, tinned fish, and so much more. I can confidently say that I will never have a pantry that lives up to my mom’s (as much as I may try!), she’s definitely taught me a thing or fifty about coming up with creative meals out of what you’ve got on hand.
And my 12pm self is usually very thankful for that! And I’m about to share a 3 (or 4 if you get fancy) ingredient salad that takes maybe 60 seconds to put together, using two of my favorite pantry staples: beans and tinned fish (stay with me!).
Let’s talk about the magic of tinned fish.
I’m not talking about a can of Bumble Bee tuna packed in water. I’m talking about delicious, naturally salty fish, packed in oil. It costs a little more but it’s completely worth it. BTW if you’re still buying water-packed tuna, please switch to olive oil immediately. It makes SUCH a difference in flavor.
When I first conceived of Golden Sage Market, I pictured a French-inspired wine bar & market, that served wine, cheese, charcuterie, and tinned fish. Oddly, tinned fish was always on the menu in my head. You can serve it in its own container and it’ll still look cute, and it’s packed with that umami flavor from the sea. I use it for everything: Niçoise salads, topping any ole salad, spreading on a piece of toast, flavoring a sauce, on a charcuterie board, the list could go on.
But most of all, I use it when I need something easy and unique on a weekday.
There’s tinned fish, then there’s Fishwife.
Let me tell you how difficult it is to find tinned fish that’s (even relatively) local, sustainable, women-owned, and tastes incredible. Oh, it’s difficult. Which is why I fell in love with Fishwife the minute I discovered them! They check all the above boxes…and… they SMOKE their fish. (What can I say, I’m a Jew from NYC…I love smoked fish! I once boldly proclaimed that a bagel & lox is my favorite breakfast and I stand by it.)
If I could be another brand, I’d probably be Fishwife. I’ve been the biggest fangirl since they started, and the day I found out they were ready for GSM to be a stockist I kind of freaked the F out. Yeah, I know, it’s usually the other way around when a retailer decides to sell a food brand, but these women are awesome. They care about where the fish comes from, how it’s raised, and the way they market themselves is so on point. Their “hot girls eat tinned fish” campaign spoke to me deeply.
Their sardines, smoked tuna, smoked salmon, and smoked trout are more flavorful than you could imagine, which is why only 2 other ingredients are needed for this salad.
Alright, I’ll get off my tinned fish soapbox (JK, I’ll never step down from it!) and give you the recipe. Then I’ll go make it for lunch.
Weekday tinned fish & chickpea salad