12 Delicious and Affordable Meals You Can Cook With a Can of Fish

If you think high-end chefs never reach for a can of tuna when they need to prepare a quick meal, we can’t help but say”Sorry Charlie.” We spoke to chefs who regularly use canned tuna, salmon and other fish as starters and as ingredients in other dishes.

“I’m a big fan of canned goods, which are pickled foods like pickles, jellies or canned foods that are ‘put’ in jars or cans to make the product last longer,” chef and TV personality Andrew Zimmern told HuffPost. . adding that often less expensive by weight than other comparable proteins. “As meat and poultry prices continue to rise, home cooks can find cans of beautiful salmon, tuna – and mackerel, sardines, clams and mussels – at their local markets and save bucks by incorporating them into their planning. regular meal.”

It is encouraging to note that canned fish is not only cheap, it is also nutritious. “Canned fish contains omega-3s, with benefits that include fighting inflammation, nourishing the skin, healing the gut, helping you feel fuller for longer and longer,” he said. Jen Smileyfounder of Wake up and read the labels.

And then there’s the convenience factor. “The best thing about canned fish for me is that I can always have it on hand for a quick dinner,” he said. Christine Pittman, founder of CookThe History.If I forget to take the chicken out of the freezer, or if I run out of time and can’t go to the grocery store, having some canned fish on hand always saves the day.”

It’s an affordable option that’s probably already in your pantry.

Chef Rossi, New York Catering Owner and Executive Chef The Furious Frying Pan, credits the canned tuna with helping her keep body and soul together during a time of cash shortage. “When I left home to be a starving artist, I stole an entire rack of tuna, which my mother had bought with coupons,” she said. “I brought her Ragu tomato sauce and dry pasta too. I survived on a mixture of tomato sauce, canned tuna and olives I stole from the bar next door.”

“Decades later, when I became a chef, I needed to create a special pasta one day, so I mixed tuna we hadn’t sold for the lunchtime melted special, marinara sauce, capers and olives to make ‘Starving Artist Pasta Puttanesca’. sold out”.

Do you think canned fish is too fishy? Try these fixes

“If you’re using a good quality brand of canned fish, it shouldn’t be too suspicious,” he said. Curtis Stonechef and owner of Maude and Gwen butcher and restaurant In Los Angeles. “I suggest relying on the acidity of the lemon juice and zest and the brine of the capers to resolve any ‘fish’ issues.”

One tip is to combine canned fish with bold flavor ingredients, chef and cookbook author Robin Asbell he said. “There’s a reason they put mayonnaise in the tuna salad, as it has an assertive presence and a lot of flavor,” said Abell. “Adding spices, chilies, crunchy vegetables, cornichons and olives all work to minimize fish qualities.”

“Really, the hidden secret is in the sauce, so I suggest you think about the mustard,” Smiley said. “Pour some on top and that’s all you’re tasting.”

Which is better: packed in oil or water?

The great debate among tuna lovers still continues – packed in oil or in water?

Rossi insists on white tuna in water. “I think ‘light’ tuna tastes like fish, and to this day I can tell when my tuna salad was made with light, not white,” she said. “Even the smallest amount of fish and I’m out the door.”

Another fan club member packed in the water is Robin Seldenexecutive chef and managing partner of Marcia Selden Catering. “I love Bumble Bee white tuna in the water. It’s not fishy, ​​it never tastes like canned fish – and that’s what I grew up with,” she said.

On the other side of the debate is Davis, who loves Chicken in Oil. “It’s wetter this way,” he said.

For Asbell, it depends on the dish. “If you’re using it in a batter and you want a lot of fish umami, buy it in olive oil and use that oil in the recipe,” she said. “If you’re emphasizing other flavors, buy it packaged in water, drain well, and let it marinate for a bit before adding it to the dish.”

Pan Bagnat

6 standout tuna dishes

pan bags: “I love a good Niçoise salad, and this sandwich has all these great salad flavors packed into crunchy, chewy bread,” Stone said. “It’s the perfect sandwich to take to the beach or a picnic. The flavors marinate with a little time, but it’s just as delicious to eat right away.”

Here is Curtis Stone’s recipe.

Tomato and tuna pasta: “I put fresh tomatoes and canned tuna in oil on hot, drained pasta,” Selden said. “The pasta absorbs the oil and the tomatoes almost blanch with the heat of the pasta. Toss with a few red pepper flakes, freshly grated Parmesan and freshly shredded basil, and you’ll feel like you’re in Italy.”

Tonato Sauce: This classic Italian sauce is made with anchovies and tuna. “It’s one of the best summer dishes,” said Sandy Davis, chef at New York-based Roxo Events.

“I make the classic sauce for poached cold meats and a looser version for dressing salads,” Zimmern said. Although it became famous as part of the viella tonnato dish, which is made with veal, you can swap the meat in place of pasta, rice or beans, and you’ll still have a delicious meal at a lower cost.

Tuna Croquettes: “A very nostalgic dish for me is my mom’s tuna croquette recipe, which involves mixing tuna, eggs and breadcrumbs together, forming small patties and then sautéing them,” Selden said. “It’s a very simple and delicious way to get kids to eat fish. It worked for my mom, and to this day we all love them.”

Macaroni and Tuna Casserole: “There isn’t a Baby Boomer out there who isn’t familiar with the good old tuna noodle casserole with fries on top,” Davis said. “It’s fast, cheap and delicious. One can – or maybe two, if you have extra coins – will feed a lot of people.”

Tuna salad: “There are those times when comfort is needed, and you just have to break it down and make your grandma’s tuna salad,” Davis said. For me, that means using Miracle Whip, hard-boiled eggs, and sweet flavor.”

Selden has a different opinion: “My tuna salad uses Hellman’s mayonnaise – just enough to add it together – freshly squeezed lime juice, diced celery, sweet onion, green apple and lots of chopped fresh dill. The addition of sour, crunchy apples and salted dill really do the trick. Put this between two pieces of yummy bread and add some fries to your sandwich to make it even crunchier.”

Don't worry about cooking fresh salmon for salmon burgers - canned ones work perfectly.

Manny Rodriguez via Getty Images

Don’t worry about cooking fresh salmon for salmon burgers – canned ones work perfectly.

6 Superstar Salmon dishes

appetizers: “This simple canned salmon dip is always a crowd favourite,” Pittman said. “Another party treat is my smoked salmon sauce recipe. I add canned salmon along with the smoked salmon (smoked salmon) so there is a lot of salmon flavor but at a lower cost.”

Creamy Pasta Sauce: “Heat the cream or crème fraîche with dill or parsley, garlic, salt and pepper,” Pittman said. “Next, add the canned fish until heated through before mixing with the cooked pasta.”

Salmon bread: “If you want to dress up canned salmon, there’s a Great Depression favorite that my paternal grandmother used to make — salmon bread with a mustard cream sauce,” Davis said. “Use canned salmon, crushed chips, eggs, and mayonnaise.”

Nicoise salad with salmon tonnato sauce: “Trust me: make a traditional Provencal Niçoise salad with salmon instead of tuna,” said Zimmern. “Cook the egg, canned fish, potatoes, vegetables, tomatoes and olives in a tonnato sauce made with salmon instead of tuna. You will get your mind blown.”

“Mix a can of salmon, two eggs, breadcrumbs, dill and lemon juice,” Pittman said. “You just heat up the burgers and then put them on buns, along with your favorite burger toppings.”

Leave a Comment