When I asked my boyfriend, an avid lover of seafood of all kinds, what I should make for this contest, he quickly and enthusiastically answered, “sardine butter!” Eaten on toast as an hors d’oeuvre or starter, it is the love child of two ingredients beloved by people from his region of France: sea salt-laced butter, and sardines. As a bonus, it is really easy to make and store. —Cristina Sciarra
Test Kitchen Notes
WHO: cristinasciarra lives in Brooklyn, is getting her MFA in writing, and loves to travel.
WHAT: A simple French-inspired butter of sardines with a kiss of lemon and chives for depth.
HOW: Mashing the butter and sardines takes nothing but a fork -- no special equipment required!
WHY WE LOVE IT: This is butter with some body, able to stand up to the crustiest bread and sturdiest cracker. It keeps well, too! —The Editors
about 6 people
1.25 sticks/10 tablespoons salted butter, slightly softened (If you can find butter with actual crystals of salt, even better)
1 can good quality sardines, packed in oil (either use boneless or debone yourself!)
juice of ½ a lemon
about a tablespoon of minced chives
freshly ground black pepper
In This Recipe
Place the softened butter in a medium bowl. Drain the sardines, and add them to the bowl. Use a fork to mash the butter and the sardines together. Have fun!
After a minute, add the lemon juice. Keep mashing until incorporated. At the
last minute, add the chives, and some black pepper.
Move the butter to a ramekin, or roll it in plastic to form a log. Refrigerate it for at least an hour or so.