When you ask chefs what item they always have in their pantry, one of the most predominant answers is always: a tin of sardines. And you really can’t go wrong with this versatile little fish, superbly tender and delicate, so perfect to toss into a bowl of pasta or a enjoy over a simple baguette. When you take the natural smooth and fishy flavor of French sardines and you combine it with the heat of hot Pili-Pili peppers, the combination is really just masterful.
The Pili Pili is a particularly spicy pepper - 8 in the Scovile scale - that's used in a lot in Creole cooking. But don’t worry, it’s not all hot and spicy in here, there’s also smooth extra virgin olive oil to temper that heat, plus cornichons and carrots for cooling touch, for a well-balanced flavor. We love these tossed on top of a baguette paired with cucumber and sprouts, or sweet red peppers and avocados. Chop them up and toss into a bowl of linguine, dressed with the olive oil in the can, and topped with capers. Pile them on top of simple saltines and open a cold beer. Perfection!
For 40 years Les Mouettes d'Arvor ("the seagulls of Arvor”) has sourced their sardines from 9 boatmen in Concarneau, one of the France’s largest fishing ports. The sardines are only fished when in season during the spring. They’re carefully hand selected – they must not be too thin or too large – then submerged in an ice bath, which allows the sardines’ flesh to firm up and the fish to be peeled. Then, painstakingly by hand, each sardine is deboned, dried, and packed in fine extra virgin olive oil. The artisan process is meticulous and guarantees the quality of the sardines.