It’s been a while since I posted a recipe that used canned fish, but that isn’t demonstrative of how much I actually cook with it. Canned tuna, obviously, gets quite a lot of use – either in my Japanese tuna patties, or in more prosaic pasta bakes and jacket potato toppings. Lunch is regularly canned sardines on crispbread, or tuna Niçoise, and it’s always handy as a lunch or supper for Cub. As I’ve mentioned before, canned tuna makes excellent fishcakes.
I have long loved Jannsen’s Temptation, a dish of potatoes, anchovies and cream. It’s an alchemist’s dream: much more than the some of it’s parts. This is my little version of it, using canned salmon. Bear always forgets the name of the original dish, and ends up calling it Rameses Revenge. So, my little version has been christened Rameses Revenge in The Bear Cave. The fantastic low-rent dill sauce is from Ikea, and I always buy in bulk when I go near an Ikea store – four jars at a go. It’s brill on crispbreads with canned fish, and on rye bread with gravadlax. It’s also wonderful with smoked mackerel. In fact, let’s just acknowledge that I could eat it by the spoonful. They call it Sås Senap and Dill, but we just call it Ikea Sauce.
On Twitter recently I found a company that specialises in sustainably sourced canned fish. I know that the bigger companies now make claims about their ethical practises, but Fish 4 Ever definitely seem to practise what they preach. They use selectively caught, sustainably sourced fish that aren’t endangered or juvenile; their ethical policies are laid out here. Added to that, they’re available to purchase online, which is handy for me as I rarely get go to supermarkets any more and the local shop’s selection of canned fish is minimal. I do try and use the local butcher and fishmonger for my meat and fish, and the local farms and farm shops for cheese, fruit and veg. It means I only go to the supermarket once a month for cleaning stuff and store cupboard essentials, and I’m happy with that – I don’t really want to give them any more of my money than I have to.
You can order their products online here; I’ve now placed two orders with them and they always turn up promptly, without too much excess packaging. I always order a couple of multi-packs of tuna, half a dozen jars of anchovies, and a couple of cans of salmon. That covers me for a couple of months, and means it’s one less thing to be worry about. Don’t worry, I’m not being paid to say any of this, but I think it’s important to spread the word about people out there that are doing good things. One of the reasons I started the blog was because I was so inspired by local produce and independent suppliers; I can’t think of any better way of doing this than to let you know about the people out there doing all the hard graft.
- 2tbsp butter
- 3 medium potatoes, peeled and very thinly sliced
As you would for potato dauphinoise
- 2 medium onions, thinly sliced
- 1 213g can salmon
- 4tbsp dill sauce
- 350ml double cream
- Peel and thinly slice the onions, and set aside.
- Peel and thinly slice the potatoes, as you would for potato dauphinoise. Cover with water if you’re going at a leisurely pace.
- Use the butter to grease a medium ovenproof dish. Place a layer of potatoes at the bottom of the dish.
- Drain the salmon and mash lightly under a fork. Smooth a layer over the potatoes, making sure it reaches the edges.
- Sprinkle the salmon with the onions, again making sure that it reaches the edges.
- Add the dill sauce to the cream and mix to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Pour over the potatoes.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 30-40 minutes until the top is golden brown and bubbling, and the potatoes are completely cooked through.
- Serve on its own or with a salad, and enjoy these ethical eats.