Monday, May 31, 2010

For Doors and Sardines: Sardine Dip

Think of the first night as the dress rehearsal. If we can just get through the play once tonight - for doors and sardines. That's what it's all about, doors and sardines. Getting on, getting off. Getting the sardines on, getting the sardines off. That's farce. That's - that's the theatre. That's life.
--Noises Off
For the last recipe (at least this time 'round) from the Cook Book Presented by The Fishwives of Charleston Oregon, I figured I really did have to feature fish. Well over half of the cookbook is dedicated to fish recipes, as well it should be; after all, how many cookbooks do you have on your shelves that kick off with an exhortation to call your Congressmen, and a prayer that they and the State Department will speak up for our country? "The Soviet Union and Japan pose a threat to the economy of our nation" is just not a phrase normally found next to a Brandy Alexander recipe, nor official resolutions from national professional federations. (If you're curious, the resolution recommends that the U.S. recognize a serious conservation problem, and kill all foreign fishery operations off the U.S. coast.)

It's certainly my only cookbook with such content. Moreover, I think it's my only cookbook with a sardine section. Not just a sardine recipe--a section! Sardine Submarine Sandwich. Sardine Rarebit. Marinated Sardines. Sardine Caesar Salad. Sardines with Sauce. Crispy Fried Sardines. Sardine 'n' Bacon Snacks. Sardine Cheese Toastwich. And, our recipe for today, Sardine Dip:
Sardine Dip

1 can sardines
1 pkg. cream cheese
1 tbsp. McKay's milk
2 tbsp. parsley, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tsp. grated onion
1 tsp. steak sauce
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp. hot pepper sauce
Chopped parsley
Assorted chips, crackers or raw vegetables

Drain sardines and flake. Cream the cheese and milk. Add remaining ingredients except parsley and chips. Add sardines and mix thoroughly. Chill. Sprinkle with parsley. Serve with chips, crackers or vegetables.
I....I have no words. I don't think I ever had a sardine until sometime in the last decade, and even then, it's a stretch for this formerly-fish-adverse gal. And this is sardines mixed with dairy.

I've done smoked salmon spread, of course, and even tuna spread, so this shouldn't throw me so much. It just does. I can't say I think I'll ever make this (no, nor any of the other eight sardine recipes). Heck, I'm hard-pressed to think I'd ever follow the footnote advice on page 128: "For a quick snack use sardines, cracker and cheese." I'm fascinated. I'm appalled. I'm willing to hear how this recipe turns out...from someone else.

Let's close out our week with the Fishwives of Charleston with a bit from the foreward:
This is a unique cook book filled with memories and illustrated with pictures of some of our won fishing fleet.

When next you visit Charleston, stroll along the docks and you are sure to see some of the boats pictured in our cook book. We are proud of this cook book. It has taken the concentrated efforts of many Charleston area residents to compile it. Many of them are no members of the fishing industry, but have joined with us in this endeavor to raise funds for what they also believe is a good cause.

--The Editor, Kay Wells


  1. What is MacKay's milk? Do you think it's just a brand name or what?

  2. It was the local grocery store. Throughout this cookbook, staples are called the store brand