We’ve all had those days – never ending days that just drag on, leaving you so tired that the concept of anything more complicated than beer and a frozen pizza makes your head throb. You just want to flop onto the couch and watch a game. I understand. I feel your pain.
I’m going to mention something to you that will possibly gross you out, but it’s actually a super healthy, well balanced dinner that has all sorts of nutrients and helped Alton Brown (of Good Eats fame) drop the ton of weight he put on after eating his way up the Mississippi River. It’s an open-faced sandwich. It’s got avocado, parsley, lemon juice, sherry vinegar, toasted sourdough bread… it’s yummy.
It also has sardines on it.
I know, I know. “Ew!” you say. “That’s the little fish in a tin can with bones and skin and stuff. Disgusting!” How about if I tell you that you can get them sans bones and skin? Heck, even with bones that you can’t feel or taste these things are freaking calcium bombs? Keep that gross scene from The Burbs out of your mind, and try this. It’s no fishier than tuna out of a can, and the sardines put that jar of fish oil supplements in your medicine cabinet to shame. Toss in avocado, and you have all sorts of heart-healthy fats.
- 2 (3.75-ounce 2-layer) tins brisling sardines in olive oil
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley leaves, divided
- 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon lemon zest, reserve the lemon and cut into 4 wedges
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 4 (1/2-inch) thick slices crusty bread, such as sourdough, country loaf or rye
- 1 ripe Hass avocado
- Coarse sea salt
Drain the oil from 1 tin of sardines into a small bowl and set aside. Drain the oil from the other tin into another small bowl and whisk in 1 tablespoon of parsley, vinegar, lemon zest, and black pepper, to taste. Add the sardines, stir to combine and set aside for up to 1 hour.
After 45 minutes, put a rack 3-inches from the broiler and heat the oven to the broiler setting on high. Brush each slice of bread on 1 side with the reserved oil. Put the bread, oil side up, onto a cooling rack set inside a half sheet pan and broil 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown and crisp.
Halve the avocado and remove the pit. Smash the flesh in each half with a fork.
Spread the avocado evenly onto the toasted bread. Top evenly with the sardines. Pour any remaining dressing on top and garnish with the remaining parsley.
Season lightly with sea salt and serve with lemon wedges.
See? It’s not evil looking at all.