It’s hard to find a better health combination for your arteries than lycopene and Omega-3s. This recipe combines the power of tomatoes with delicious homemade sardines. Brining the fish makes all the difference, and cooking blends the fish and tomato flavors. I prefer to use small whole fish such as smelt, mackerel, or herring, which have a lower mercury content than larger fish. If you use a larger fish such as trout or tuna, cut it into pieces. I serve these tomato sardines over brown rice or combine them with mayonnaise, celery, onion, carrot, and jicama and make a sardine salad sandwich on crispy French bread.
2-3 lb. small whole fish (mackerel, herring, or smelt), cleaned, heads removed, skin on, and bones in
1/4 cup kosher salt dissolved in 2 cups water
1/4 cup olive oil
1 can (15oz) tomato sauce
1 Tbs. tomato paste
1 cup water
3 bay leaves
1 clove garlic
2 tsp. peppercorns
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. sugar
1/2 cup sliced sweet pickles
1 cup sliced carrots
1. Add the fish to the saltwater brine and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. Remove fish and discard the brine.
2. Place fish in a slow cooker with the olive oil and remaining ingredients. Be sure fish is completely covered with liquid. Add water if necessary.
3. Simmer on low heat until fish is very soft, even the bones, about 3-6 hours, depending on the size of the fish.