The Culinary Calendar tells me that today is Feast of Shesmu, Egyptian god of the Wine Press and that on this day in 1876 canned sardines went on sale in the U.S. for the first time. They were packed in oil.
I also learned that, rather bizarrely, in 2002 new regulations were put into effect that require German pig farmers to spend at least 20 seconds every day with each of their pigs, 10 seconds in the morning and 10 seconds in the afternoon. We’re not informed as to the regulations there might be for spending time with German cows, sheep, chickens and other farm animals.
I’m fond of canned sardines, very fond of them. In fact, I find that I have written no less than five posts about them!
Google informs me that I am not alone in my admiration of this lowly food. Witness this delightful extract from Robert William Service’s poem, Song Of The Sardine:
A fat man sat in an orchestra stall and his cheeks were wet with tears,
As he gazed at the primadonna tall, whom he hadn’t seen in years.
“Oh don’t you remember” he murmured low “that Spring in Montparnasse,
When hand in hand we used to go to our nightly singing class.
Ah me those days so gay and glad, so full of hope and cheer.
And that little super that we had of tinned sardines and beer.
When you looked so like a little queen with your proud and haughty air,
That I took from the box the last sardine and I twined it in your hair.”
Ah, happy Thursday, my friends. I am off to make toast … and I know exactly what I want on it.