How to: Clean and filet sardines
Taste: Rich, strong, and slightly minerally; great for grilling whole.
Source: Pacific Ocean, Baja California to Monterey Bay and north to southeast Alaska.
Eco factor: Sardines are caught with little impact on the surrounding habitat and almost no unintentional harvest of other species. Full of omega-3 fatty acids, phosphorus, and iron; no pollutants.
How to choose and prepare: Sardines are sold fresh and whole. Look for fish that have bright eyes, shiny skin, and a mildly fishy aroma. Plan to cook them within a day of purchase. If your fishmonger doesn't sell sardines already cleaned, it's easy to do yourself.