When I first served this at a party I had to lie and call it tuna. I kept my ears peeled for the first crunch followed by gasps of delight. Only then did I quickly confess to my little white lie. Sardines, unjustly known as bait fish, are much misunderstood. These small oily fishes belonging to the herring family are not only delicious but are also high in omega-3 acids and iron. Canned sardines are eaten throughout Southeast Asia. This recipe is my open faced take on the sardine puff, a favorite among Singaporeans.
- 1 can of sardines in tomate sauce (Ayam Brand is recommended)
- 1 Tbsp butter
- 1 whole onion thinly sliced
- 1 clove of minced garlic
- 2 tps curry power
- 2 Tbsp tomato paste (if unavailable substitute with ketchup)
- 1 Tbsp Lingham’s sweet chili sauce
- 2 Tbsp calamansi lime juice (if unavailable use regular lime juice)
- 1 Tbsp of finely chopped cilantro
- 2 sheets of puff pastry
- 1 egg
- Empty sardines from can and reserve tomato sauce.
- Saute onions in butter for 5 mins. Add 1 tsp salt to sweat onions.
- Add curry powder and garlic. Saute garlic till fragrant.
- Add reserved tomato sauce, tomato paste, Lingham sweet chili sauce and calamansi lime juice.
- Reduce mixture to a jam like texture.
- Fold sardines and chopped cilantro into the mixture. Expect sardines to fall apart which is fine.
- Cut puff pastry into squares.
- Beat 1 egg and apply egg wash to puff pastry squares. Bake according to manufacturer’s instructions.
- Spoon sardine mixture onto each square and garnish with cilantro leaves.