Groving up in Down-Town Copenhagen and being frequent guest with my parents in the city’s many semi-gastronimic outlets (aka Værtshuse) I have a special attatchment to Lisbon’s tinned delicacies.
Back then most of these places worked as cantines where workes could drink a few beers with their homemade lunch. If they didn’t have any, they could usually choose a few dishes like meatballs served with pickled cucumber salat and rye bread, soft white bread served with a few slices of cheese or sardines served in an opened can served with two slices of rye bread, a quarter of lemon and “pimped” up with a bouquet of Parsley
As a teenager we lived from sandwiches made from two loaves of bread a cans of sardines, tuna or salmons mixed with cheap mayonnaise and two loaves of bread our during countless rock festivals…
When I started playing chef for firends deep fried breaded moules (from Limfjorden) became my ‘House snack’ – followed up with Salade Nicoise… with huge chunks of Tuna
Today we use all kinds tinned fish. The tuna for one of Italian favorites: Vitello Tonnato, the sardines on toasted bread with a good olive oil. The anchovy for our Andalusian Toasts – or all kinds of fish and seafood straight from the can with a sunny tomato.
Tinned Fish is probably the best distributed product from Portugal – you get it in supermarkets and grocery stores all over the world! And most people we know have cans hidden away in cupboards, drawers, fridges and other places they have for storing food items … just in case somethings happen.
So now that you can’t be here in Lissabon why not use the situation to get a taste of Portugal at home…
...Such is my fondness for conservas (as they’re known on the Iberian Peninsula) that when my wife and I traveled to Portugal in 2017, I spent hours in tinned-fish shops gazing in wonder at the beautifully packaged wares. We even have a poster of Portuguese sardines hanging in our kitchen.