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Scotland, Continued: Getting to Know the Brisling Sardine

March 18, 2011

Crown Prince sources just one type of fish from Scotland, and it’s a special one: the Brisling Sardine. This tiny fish is just a small part of Scotland’s seafood exports, but it’s very important to the local communities of fishermen and canners we work with. Not to mention those of us who love to eat them!

All Sardines Are Herrings, But Not All Herrings Are Sardines

It’s true! Biologically speaking, sardines belong to the herring family (Clupeidae). The Brisling Sardine (also known as Sprattus sprattus) is one of 170 species in that family. We recommend using this fact to impress acquaintances at your next cocktail party—perhaps over a nice seafood appetizer!

Scotland’s scenic Castle Urquhart. Photo rights: Dustan Hoffman / Crown Prince

Scotland’s scenic Castle Urquhart. Photo rights: Dustan Hoffman / Crown Prince

The Flavor Factor

As you know from our last post, the flavor in our sardines begins in the water, when they’re caught during the winter months for optimum texture and flavor, then transported to the cannery in Fraserburgh.

There, the sardines are soaked in a light brine and then kiln-smoked over a mixture of oak, beech and Douglas fir. The result is a subtle and authentic smoky flavor that plays well off the natural richness of the fish.

Finally, the sardines are hand-packed in an interleaved pattern to create a pleasant appearance when you open the can. Crown Prince Brisling Sardines are packed in oil, tomato, mustard or purified water.

Brisling Sardines Photo rights: Dustan Hoffman / Crown Prince

Brisling Sardines Photo rights: Dustan Hoffman / Crown Prince

Get Cooking!

Of course, the best part about sardines is eating them. Crown Prince Brisling Sardines lend themselves to salads, pastas, appetizers and entrees alike. If you’re new to cooking with sardines, we’d suggest starting with our Baked Ziti and Sardines recipe (pictured below). It’s a classic Italian dish with spices, sauce, cheese and a hint of seafood. You really can’t go wrong!

Baked Ziti and Sardines

Baked Ziti and Sardines

If you’re feeling a bit more decadent, go for the Broiled Sardines with Lemon and Cilantro Vinaigrette. With zesty citrus and herbs, fresh onions and succulent broiled sardines, this dish is great with rice or a fresh green salad.

Broiled Sardines with Lemon and Cilantro Vinaigrette

Broiled Sardines with Lemon and Cilantro Vinaigrette

You can find more great recipes on our Seafood Recipes page.

If you like what you’re reading on the Crown Prince Seafood blog, please come back often. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, or contact us directly. We look forward to hearing from you.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. Jane collette permalink
    July 21, 2021 6:19 am

    What are the warnings concerning sardines and how many can be eaten safely?

    • August 3, 2021 3:01 pm

      Thank you for your question and sorry for my delayed response. The warning that you see on your sardines has to do with California Proposition 65 and BPA in can linings. Although our supplier does not use BPA in its can liners it is possible trace amounts can be present since it is ubiquitous in the environment. Prop 65 listed BPA with a zero tolerance so as a result we need to list the warning on our labels. The website link provides additional information about the warning.

      If you have additional questions, please reach out again.


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