Society for the Appreciation of the Lowly Tinned Sardine

Jan 27, 2013

Mail Bag

Hi there - I was researching sardines (what else?) and came across
your very interesting and informational website. What a collection of
tins!

Great photos of the meals too. I noticed the serving device- a
spatula? with the fish cutout and it intrigues me. Is that a recent
purchase? I'd love to add one to my collection - would appreciate it
if you could provide any information on where I might be abe to
locate. I'm aware of sardine forks but nothing with a flat surface.

Thanks in advance-

Vee

We've talked about Sardine Forks and other Appliances and then there is this.

Key 1

I don't know where I got this or if it is Sardine Specific but it is for opening tins. When it comes apart into two pieces the handle piece has a groove to grip a tin top and the triangle at the other end is for turning leverage. The triangle is not a bottle opener. Also cast into the triangle is "Made in England"

Key 2

I think Mama Sherry foraged this out of a thrift store.
Thanks Vee.

Dec 14, 2012

The Simple Life

I ran out of gas.
I... I had a flat tire.
I didn't have enough money for cab fare.
My tux didn't come back from the cleaners.
An old friend came in from out of town.
Someone stole my car.
There was an earthquake.
A terrible flood.
Locusts!
IT WASN'T MY FAULT, I SWEAR TO GOD!

Whatever.

What would You have me plate?

This box from places unknown?
Box of Love
Something from the Shelving Unit?
Shelving
These few tins from deep inside the Shoulder of Canada?
Canadians
I brought these back myself and was amazed that they traveled in my carry on. I had completely forgot Guideline #33 which clearly states that when traveling across boarders with contraband tins always check them through.

I will not delight you with wondrous tins from faraway places tonight. I shall keep it simple. Take it back down a notch and taste it old school. There was a time, back before the yelptastic cable tv driven foodie revolution that it was just food.

Cousin Angelo
Columbus Calabrese, Carr's Poppy & Sesame, and some Wisconsin Sharp I had to clean the mold off of, plated on a cheap cutting board. Shut it.

The tin is a simple Angelo Parodi. OK. It is actually a tin smuggled back from Italy by my great friend Andre but You can get these here and we have tried them before. It's PROBABLY just the same as U.S. Tins (maybe).

And of course a Heretic Shallow Grave Porter is in order.

Cousin Angelo 2
These are two big monsters in a clean oil with a fine texture.
These are the 3 Tin standard when it comes to big fish.
These are a refresher course.
These are something You should try so as to acclimate your palate.

Whatever.

I've got a box of tins sourced within our great United, and I shall enlighten Ye of little faith. Given time and beer all shall be revealed.

Sep 18, 2012

Old Landmark

The wealthy and aging Jonny Hamachi, accompanied by his entourage of personal aides, began moving from one hotel to another, always taking up residence in the top floor penthouse. During the last ten years of his life, from 2016 to 2026, Hamachi lived in hotels in Beverly Hills, Boston, Las Vegas, Nassau, Freeport, Vancouver, London, Managua, Acapulco, and others.
Howard Hughes ain't got nothing on me.

I'm just hiding out behind my stacks and stacks of tins.


We're putting the Society back together.

Jan 19, 2012

MEDIA ADVISORY

- FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -


MIGHTY POWER OF SMALL FISH EXPLORED IN NEW TV DOCUMENTARY

Halifax, Nova Scotia - January 9, 2012 – Most people have tried them at least once and we often claim to feel squeezed like one. Some people eat them daily while others can’t stomach the smell or their texture. They pack a healthy punch of omega 3 fatty acids and mega doses of vitamin D. Love or hate them, sardines are one amazing fish.

The Last Sardine Outpost is a half hour documentary that explores the last remaining sardine processing plant in North America located in Blacks Harbour, New Brunswick. The survival of Connors Bros. cannery and the associated fishery defies the odds and is due primarily to the resourcefulness and determination of the 900 residents of this tightly knit coastal community.

The film reveals the world of sardines: from the pristine waters of the Bay of Fundy to the fishing boats that deliver their silvery bounty to the cannery, and from the bustling processing line to store shelves around the world.

The Last Sardine Outpost is written and directed by Latonia Hartery and produced by Edward Peill from Halifax-based Tell Tale Productions Inc.

“This story is all about heart. The people in Blacks Harbour are doing everything possible to keep a 120 year old industry alive - it’s very impressive,” says director Latonia Hartery. “The community is very passionate about maintaining its way of life and if anyone can adapt and make it work it’ll be them.”

In 2010, facing cheaper imports from Asia and South America, the last sardine cannery in the United States closed its doors. This catapulted Connors Bros. into the position of North America’s last remaining – and the world’s largest - sardine processor. Blacks Harbour is hailed as the “Sardine Capital of the World” but the longevity of that title is uncertain. The company was recently sold to a group of UK venture capitalists. The future of the cannery – and the entire community – now hangs in the balance.

The Last Sardine Outpost will be broadcast on CBC Television’s Land & Sea on Sunday, January 22, 2012 at 12 Noon. Following the broadcast, the documentary can be watched on the CBC TV website at: Land & Sea. Land & Sea is one of CBC’s longest running TV series and can be followed on Twitter: @cbclandandsea




That's this coming Sunday so get your viewing party organized. Now that the Packers dropped the ball football season is over anyways.

Jan 10, 2012

Travel Advisory

A travel advisory is a public notice issued by the Society to provide information about the relative sardine availability when travelling to or visiting one or more specific foreign destinations. The purpose is to enable travelers to make an informed decision about a particular travel destination, and to help travellers prepare adequately for what may be encountered on their trip.

Portland, Oregon USA
Evoe
While travelling North to the Hawthorne region of Oregon we chanced upon one small counter with a few tables.
The Gallego at Evoe
Where they served The Gallego - sardine, fennel and hot pepper slaw on a toasted ciabatta roll. Angelo Parodi, the tin de jour, decent, fine for sandwiches.

It was delicious! As was everything else the five of us devoured that rainy afternoon with two bottles of Castello di Verduno Bianco. The food and service were top notch. Gotta come up with a Society Approved Sticker they can put in their window.

Plan your trip accordingly.

Sep 23, 2011

Mail Bag

My Mother was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year. She has been working with a nutritionist who told her that she needed a good source of Omega 3 fatty acids and protein, and to make sure that the seafood she eats is low in mercury. I'm quite certain you know where this is headed. The attached picture is of the gift basket her brother sent this month.
Lovely Gift Basket
Naturally, I thought of you.
Scott


Show her the Four and Five Tin Tins.
And the Recipes.

Hang In There Susan!!

Aug 22, 2011

Sheee-ets

Long time Society Member, Foodie and Fasionisto, Nevin Mrgan dropped Us a line.

Sardinecover
Sardinesheet
Sardinecloseup
FOUR PIECE BED SET - $265

There’s nothing cosier than being packed in like sardines. Dream of catching a big fish as you sleep amongst your new friends. You can pull up the doona cover over you so are inside the tin. The best bit is, these sardines don’t smell!

Sardine Tin Bed Toppings are made with beautifully soft 100% 200 Thread Count Cotton.

What's up with the 200 thread count?

I mean I love these so much I want to buy an Airstream with 4 single sleepers just so I can outfit it with these Bed Toppings, or maybe just a trip to Ikea to get a mattress that fits these sheets. We don't have the space but I could make it a dog bed down in the laboratory (Annie would love it). But 200 thread count just won't cut it. Not at that price.

That was one of the big secrets that Everyone kept from me. Thread Count. God what a difference. No one told me till I was like thirty-two. Tell the young adults in Your world. Thread Count - It's Important.

Anyways, Thanks Nevin.

Jul 14, 2011

Latas de Contrabando

Rebecca Jane has returned from traipsing through Southern Europe and she brought back a small load of Spanish Tins. My Sardine Shelf is quite full at the moment, in part from Smugglers bringing back tins from around the world. I have been hoarding precious tins and even have one or two of the newest shipment already.

So rather than stack these in with the fifty eight (58) tins I'm going to pop them all tonight. I can hardly remember where the 58 came from. Some are domestically sourced and maybe a third are smuggled in from places like Spain, France, and Turkey.
Spanish Tins
Sardinas Cuca en aceite d oliva
Albo Sardinas picantonas
El Porrón Sardinas en escabeche
Paco Lafuente Sardinas en escabeche
Paco Lafuente Sardinillas en aceite de oliva

Interesting packaging notes:
The Cuca has an interesting basic design and mentions "Sin Gluten"
Albo can be found around the States but not in Spanish. We've talked about them before once or twice.
The El Porrón is bright and eye catching with the long spouted wine flask it's named for on the box.
And the Paco Lafuentes have an interesting number system showing how many fish will be in each tin. The sardinas says 3/5 piezas and the sardinillas - 20/22 piezas.

Cuca has a strong website and blog. Check out this article. Paco Lafuente's website has beautiful tinned seafood. The others don't have a real web presence that I can find.

So Spain means another trip to the Spanish Table (such a great place) and a quick stop at the Bowl.
Spanish Accoutrements
Serrano ham, Cabra al Pimenton goat's milk cheese, morcilla de arroz (blood sausage) a little can of little olives, white anchovies, Valencianos artisanal crackers, a sixer of Estrella Galicia and a bottle of Muga Rioja rose. I'm also making up some patatas bravas.

While those cook Let's talk about escabèche
[es-keh-BEHSH]
Escabeche is a typical Mediterranean cuisine which refers to both a dish of poached or fried fish (escabeche of chicken, rabbit or pork is common in Spain) that is marinated in an acidic mixture before serving, and to the marinade itself. The dish is common in Spanish, Salvadoran, Panamanian, Peruvian, Philippine, Puerto Rican, Dominican, Mexican and Guatemalan cuisine, and popular in Catalonia, Portugal and Provence. Influences of the dish appear as far as Asia-Pacific with adjustments to local food staples. It is usually served cold after marinating in a refrigerator overnight or longer. The acid in the marinade is usually vinegar but can also include citrus juice. Escabeche is a popular presentation of canned or potted preserved fish, such as tuna, bonito or sardines. wiki
Not a common tin around these parts. I haven't had one that I remember.

All Right
Let's get to it.
Sardinas 1

Sardinas 2

Sardinas 3
So, the same order, top to bottom, as in the pic and descriptions above.

We started with the babies. The Paco Lafuente Sardinillas. At the bottom of the platter. These have a really good texture, not mushy. The oil is a bit thin and not the extra virgin We've come to expect, but a fine everyday tin if you like the little guys. Three and a half tins.
Tin
Tin
Tin
Half Tin
We followed this with the Cuca (top of the stack), staying with the olive oil before we ventured into flavors unknown. Three giants. Skin, bones, and slimy internal organs?
Eviscerate Much?
These didn't get any better from there. They were mushy and had a bad funk that demanded immediate removal from the table. The lack of evisceration might have fouled this tin. The Spanish Crackers cleansed the palate and the blood sausage made it happy again. Zero Out Of Five Tins





We then jumped on the Albo and were brought back to what makes us happy. Mild, mild heat, great texture, clean tasting oil, two years ago I gave them a bonus tin for bits and packaging, now that I've been spoiled to the glory that is (gasp) the Royal Tins of France, I don't warrant a bonus tin for such veils. It's a Three out of Five Tin tin. $3.99 here in the States. Eat it everyday!
Tin
Tin
Tin
The serrano ham tastes like it's plastic packaging.

We finally get to the escabèche.

These are interesting and different and delightful.
The fish are smoked, and then tinned with the vinegary herbal oil. The oil seems a bit thinner than usual and that's a good thing. Both tins had good texture and Screamed for rye bread, a bit of yogurt and a pinch of dill.

I'm glad We had two tins to taste and compare. The first (El Porrón - middle) , being our first escabèche lifetin, was intriguing. It gave Us a new way to think about sardines. A new flavor. How have I not found these before now?

And then We tried the Paco Lafuente.

And it was even better. Zesty, delicious.

El Porrón set the standard. Three out of Five Tins.
Tin
Tin
Tin
Paco Lafuente passed it. Four out of Five Tins.
Tin
Tin
Tin
Tin
These were not the Euro Crème de la Crème. But a fine dinner and discussion they did make.

Thanks to Rebecca Jane for risking detention and interrogation and Thanks to the 100+ Society Members for Appreciating.

Jun 15, 2011

Conservas Valcárcel

We've migrated back. And as soon as we hit town we go to the SuperMercado. And I head to the Sardinas aisle and grab what I don't know.

Back at the House, BK is a Society Member from the way back machine. He calls it out. Let's pop a tin.

Conservas Valcárcel 1
This tin cost 790 pesos which is top dollar no matter where you are.
Vigilante
An interesting package got even more interesting when I noticed Serie Limitada on the back of the box.
Conservas Valcárcel 4
And then found a fun and thought out tin inside the box. Their Centennial Range.
Conservas Valcárcel 2
Plated up with Gamesa Saladitas, La Costeña Rajas, mexilimes and Totopos de tortilla de maíz.
Conservas Valcárcel 3
Also some frozen Hornitos and tins of Tecate.
Conservas Valcárcel 5
Their website shows History and Tradition, a Sustained Push, and a Calendar of Catches. They are thinking hard and doing good work over in Spain.

These border on brisling, 10 to 12 babies all cleaned up. A decent olive oil but a bit on the mushy side. Not a lot of tooth here.
Conservas Valcárcel 6
But damn, put it on a salty cracker, add a pickled chile jalapeño and a squeeze of mexilime and it's delicioso. I wanted to go 3 point 5 but shit, I'm in Cabo, Cuatro Fuera de Cinco Latas. I hope they show up in the States.
Tin
Tin
Tin
Tin

No Días Malo.

May 18, 2011

Remember The Stinson

Little Sumpin Sumpin from the Sardine King
Little Sumpin Sumpin from The Sardine King.

The skeletal remains of once thriving existence.

I'll take half a dozen of the with jalapeno peppers and a half a dozen in Louisiana hot sauce.
February 21, 2010 
GUY RAZ, host:  
The town of Prospect Harbor, Maine, sits across the water from Acadia National Park. It's a small, down-east fishing village, known in the region for its sardine cannery, Stinson Seafood.It's the last sardine cannery operating in the United States. It's been around for more than a century. And if you drive down the main street in Prospect Harbor, you're likely to see a large sign in the shape of a fisherman holding a can of Stinson's signature product: Beach Cliff Sardines.
This week, Stinson's parent company, Bumblebee Foods, said that because of federal limits on herring catches, the plant was no longer economically viable. They plan to close the cannery on April 18. The plant's a hundred and twenty-eight employees will lose their jobs. 
One of those is plant manager Peter Colson. He's been with Stinson for 39 years. 
Mr. PETER COLSON (Plant Manager, Stinson Seafood): That's on the payroll. I started before I was old enough to be on the payroll, working in the plant. I would do other odd jobs just to try to make some extra money by selling dents, which is dented product that can't be sold on the market, which I would buy for eight cents a can and sell them for 10 cents a can and make two cents. 
RAZ: And how did you even get into the business in the first place? 
Mr. COLSON: Well, my father was vice president of operations. At that time, he was plant manager of the facility. We kind of grew up in the business. I'd watch what he was doing and just was interested in how the people get along so well together and work together as an industry. 
RAZ: Now, you've been there 39 years. What did you think? How did you react when you heard that the plant was shutting down? 
Mr. COLSON: Well, the first thing I thought of was the people that I've worked with for so many years. We have one lady here that's worked here for 54 years. I've also handled parties for two ladies that worked here for 60 years. There's a lot of camaraderie around here that people don't want to leave once they get here. 
RAZ: Is Stinson the biggest company in town? 
Mr. COLSON: Yes, it is. 
RAZ: The cannery has been in operation for at least a hundred years, right? 
Mr. COLSON: That's correct. 
RAZ: What is the building like? 
Mr. COLSON: Well, we've done a lot of renovation. In 1968, the plant burnt down, and within a year, the Stinson family had put together a more-modern facility using concrete and steel, and they've made this into a very nice-looking operation.
They modernized the equipment. Back years ago, when I first started, you'd need a hundred packers to cut the heads and the tails off with scissors. Now, we have automated machines that will cut the fish. What we used to use a hundred packers for we do with 20 packers, and they lay the fish in the can, already pre-cut. 
RAZ: I understand this is the last sardine cannery in the United States. 
Mr. COLSON: That's correct. 
RAZ: In the country. 
Mr. COLSON: Yes. 
RAZ: Where have they gone? I mean, who's canning sardines? 
Mr. COLSON: New Brunswick, Canada, will produce the remaining amount of sardines that are produced in North America. They're also produced in Europe and South America as well. 
RAZ: Peter Colson, what are your plans? I mean, after the plant closes on the 18th of April, what will you do? 
Mr. COLSON: Well, I have to facilitate the closing of the facility and make sure that we can, you know, relocate the people is my biggest concern. And then I don't know if I'm going to I would like to maintain my lifestyle in the town of Prospect Harbor, but we'll have to wait and see. 
RAZ: That's Peter Colson. He's the plant manager of Stinson Seafood Company. It's the last-standing sardine cannery in America. It's set to close in mid-April.    Peter Colson, good luck to you. 
Mr. COLSON: Thank you very much. 
Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.

damn

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