What happens when a can of sardines, an avocado, some kale and a pita get together? They have a yummy flavor party and you get a delicious quick meal or snack!
This meal was a first for me. Sardines as a whole are a totally new experience. I always pride myself on being willing to try unconventional things, but for whatever reason, these little fish stayed out of my circle of consumption. After getting some inspiration from different food blogs and doing a tiny bit of research that they were a generally healthy food item, I went for it! (Sardines are much lower in mercury than their cousins in cans, tuna. find out your mercury consumption and WOW, check out this too: 6 health benefits)
First, get yourself a can of sardines (about a $1.25 or so). I bought these sardines, with the fish in olive oil. Right now I am avoiding all vegetable oils with the exception of coconut and olive oil. (But did you know how hard/easy that can be at times!? Plus, there are so many oils in so many types of foods, some that you would never expect to have them, too!) Something seemed reassuring to me to have the fish resting in oil and so far they have been a fine choice. Crack open the lid and check out your fish. The heads, tails, and most fins, etc have been removed. However, there will probably be some remnants of these things and the bones. (Don’t be scared! It’s okay!)
Here is my easy method for getting your fish “pretty”. After draining the can, (my dog loves the juice on top of her dry food and I know a cat would too) dump the contents onto a cutting board. Look at your first fish, with your fingers, locate the middle of the fish and lightly squeeze, so it separates. The fish should come apart so to speak, and hopefully you get yours apart in one long piece. (This might take some practice). With the fish separated, you should now see the spinal bones. Pinch one end and pull the bones up and out. If any remain, lightly use your fingernail to scrape (in one motion) the rest of the bones away. Repeat this process with all the fish. Now, cut them up into little chunks, as fine or as chunky as you like. The fish now looks similar to any can of tuna, at which point, this becomes a lot less scary and much more familiar (and easier to eat).
Stay with me! This might seem like a lot of work but it’s really not that bad. You will become a sardine eating pro in no time, I am sure!
Now for the pizza! Get a whole wheat pocket pita on a small cookie sheet and spray it lightly with olive oil. Then dazzle it with salt and pepper. Add one slice of mozzarella cheese (or a small amount of shredded cheese, maybe 1/4 cup) to the pita, this is kinda like your sauce. Now add about half of the sardines from the pile you just created. Add some lime or lemon juice, maybe some red pepper flakes and then lovingly spread about 1/2 of a Hass avocado on top (mash it first). The avocado is pretty crucial to successful sardine consumption. In my experience thus far, it really MAKES the whole experience. However, if avocados are really hard to get, I think some hummus or some spicy mustard might make it wonderful as well.
Now, if you wanted to just go ahead and eat it like this, you would be welcome to do that. But if you were willing to do just a few more things, you would really have yourself a fabulous little meal. Take some kale (I had a bag of already cut pieces) and fit as much as you can on top. Spray some more olive oil on the top, give another dash of salt and pepper and there you go! Under a low broiler, place your pizza and wait about five minutes. Near the end of that five minutes, shake some Parmesan cheese for a true “pizza” experience. The kale should crisp up nicely and give you a diverse mouth feel and the combination of everything is going to “WOW” your taste buds.
Go ahead and make two from the start if you are pretty hungry, it should fill you up nicely. Or, save the second for another meal or, share it with someone you like.
Sardine pita pizza
Serves 1 or maybe 2 if you double the ingredients
1 whole wheat pocket pita
Olive oil spray
1/3 cup kale, chopped
1/2 can sardines, chopped
1/2 Hass avocado, mashed
Slice of mozzarella cheese or about 1/4 cup, shredded
Use these ingredients as desired- Salt and pepper, red pepper flakes to taste, lemon or lime juice