A new way to think about tinned fish

Tue 19th June 2018
Cj Ifc 770X600

Written by renowned seafood chef, Sunday Brunch regular and Seafish Ambassador CJ Jackson.

As a working mum, I want to get a quick supper on the table but want to make sure I have provided some of the ‘5 a day’ and of course at least 2 portions of seafood a week.

My teenage son loves ‘his’ type of comfort food and his usual request is ‘tuna rice or pasta’ with lots of chopped tomato forked through... what can be easier? What he doesn’t know is that I have substituted his tuna for canned mackerel recently as I’m keen for him to get the best Omega 3 levels for his concentration levels - which tuna is lacking... and he has loved it!

But tinned fish - is that appealing?

It is really worth looking at the tinned fish selection in your supermarket - I lifted my head out of my ‘usual shopping list’ and looked at the canned and jar fished aisle - I was pleasantly surprised. Thanks to the work of The UK’s only canning facility International Fish Canners, which is a family run business in Fraserburgh, some main retailers - particularly Tesco, Morrison’s and ASDA now have an excellent range of Scottish mackerel and Scottish sardines which stretch well beyond ‘in brine or olive oil’. 

Ifc Blog

Variety observed

Recent and new lines include lots of popular global profiles including Portuguese Peri Peri, Thai Green and Red Curry and Mexican to name a few along with more sophisticated marinades infused oil recipes such as including sea salt and rosemary.  Suddenly my creative recipe hat is on... and I’m imagining all sorts of family meals to give everyone a change!

Freshness experienced

The best thing is that they are using the very best fish! Mackerel is specially selected and caught at just the right time of year to ensure best quality fish with excellent levels of omega 3. The fish is landed at the door too – right into Fraserburgh harbor. This fish also comes with the Marine Stewardship logo (blue disc with a white tick) which ensures the product is also sustainably harvested


Dishes tasted

The creative team at IFC served up Greek salad with sea salt and rosemary Scottish sardines, Nachos with avocado, Mexican mackerel and soured cream, Cornbread, coleslaw and peri peri mackerel... the red curry mackerel was a special treat and that gently heated and stored into rice with coriander and lime was excellent. So loads of ideas for all eating occasions: packed lunch, snacking and family suppers.

It is now quite possible to tuck into all of these and not feel you are getting the same old... especially for those wanting to eat more fish! So lots of ideas and the knowledge that everyone is getting the portion of fish for the day... and - check out the price... who said you can’t eat fish on a budget.

CJ Jackson 

Seafood School at Billingsgate Market