The Sardine Toast at The Whale Wins is an enduring favorite among customers and staff alike. Marie Rurtherford, Whale's talented Chef de Cuisine, shares the recipe:

Renee and I were discussing food, throwing out ideas--fenugreek, tomatoes. I went into the kitchen and started putting things together. With testing and tweaking it became what is on the menu. 

1 can of Matiz sardines (blue and white box)
2 large slices of Seawolf's hearty sourdough bread, cut straight across and then again diagonally
1 head fennel
1/2 bunch parsley, picked
1/4 cup of chives, chopped thinly
Lemon juice
Olive oil
Maldon sea salt
1/2 cup mayonnaise
5 tomatoes
Pre heat oven to 400 degrees, place tomatoes on a cookie sheet and roast until the tomatoes are charred and begin to slump.  Mill or blend the tomatoes until smooth. Place in pan and reduce for 30 minutes over medium-low heat. Season the reduced tomatoes with 1 tablespoon of curry and salt to taste. Combine with mayonnaise and test for salt again (depending on how much mayo you like on your toast, there will be some leftover).
Place sliced bread on an oiled sheet tray, drizzle more oil on top of bread and salt. Toast until golden brown.  The toast should be crispy but still chewy.  
Shave fennel thinly on a mandolin and place in a bowl with parsley and chopped chives. Add 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, 1 teaspoon of olive oil and salt.  Mix to combine.
Once bread is cool enough to handle, spread the curried tomato mayo mixture on each slice of toast.  Place 1 sardine on slice, season each sardine with a little salt. Next, add a small amount of the fennel salad to each toast. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil. Serves at least 2. Eat with your hands!

More Stories

Drop us a line

General Inquiries:


Employment: Email


Site Credits

Illustration: Jeffrey Mitchell

Design Shore

Development Transom


2018 Recipients:

Jubilee Women’s Center


Villa Academy

Hugo House

Alice Gosti

Seattle Humane

Madrona Elementary PTSA

Planned Parenthood

Oceans Initiative

Salish Center for Sustainable Fishing Methods

Miracle Guild

Washington Wine

Earth Corps

Zero Food Print

RAICES, The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services

Seattle Fishermens Memorial

St. Alphonsus Parish School

SMART (Start Making A Reader Today)

Boston University: Food and Wine

On The Boards

Seattle's Children’s Hospital

NW Immigration Rights

Friends of Ebey

PCC Landtrust

Green Plate Special