Few weeks ago I published photographs my wife’s fish pie on my instagram and facebook pages. It intrigues several of my followers and I promised to prepare a recipe for this dish. Apologies for the wait but your patience is now being rewarded. Last weekend I cooked fish pie for dinner according to my wife’s strict instructions and I am now ready to share her secret. This is a great dish for using spare bits of fish after filleting. Filling and flavoursome it sits near the top of my favourite comfort foods. Plus it is a great way to make your little ones eat more fish! Give it a go and let me know how it was.
Makes 4 portions
Equipment required: square ovenproof dish around 20 x 20 cm or similar
- 750g potatoes
- 2 hard boiled eggs
- 100g salmon cut into bite size chunks
- 100g white fish (cod / haddock) cut into bite size chunks
- 100g smoked fish (haddock / pollock) cut into bite size chunks
- 500g full fat milk + extra for mash potatoes
- 45g butter + extra for mash potatoes
- 45g flour
- 1 tsp grated nutmeg
- 2 tsp Dijon mustard
- 2 tsp wholegrain mustard
- 8 uncooked prawns, shelled (optional)
- Salt and pepper
- Peel and cook the potatoes in plenty of salted water. Drain and mash with butter, milk and wholemeal mustard. Season to taste. Cover and set aside to cool down a little.
- Pre heat the oven to 190 centigrade.
- Peel the eggs and cut them into bite size chunks. Scatter on the bottom of the ovenproof dish.
- Scatter the fish (and prawns if used) on the bottom of a deep frying (sauté) pan. Cover with milk and place over a medium heat. Poach the fish for about 5 minutes. You want the fish to release it’s flavours into the milk but not to be cooked.
- Remove the fish from a pan and scatter evenly on the bottom of the ovenproof dish. Reserve the milk.
- Melt the butter in a medium sized heavy-bottomed saucepan over a medium heat.
- When the butter is starting to bubble add the flour and immediately mix briskly with a whisk off the heat. Keep whisking until all of the butter has been absorbed and you have a lightly golden putty-like paste that comes cleanly away from the pan.
- Place the pan over a medium to low heat and add the milk, a little at a time. Whisk continuously to ensure no lumps form. Once all the milk has been added and you have a smooth sauce add the nutmeg, Dijon mustard and season to taste. Cook for another 2 – 3 minutes mixing from time to time. Take the béchamel sauce off the heat.
- Pour the sauce into the ovenproof dish and spread evenly to cover all of the fish and eggs.
- Spread the mashed potatoes evenly on top of the béchamel and fish mixture. Decorate with a fork and scatter few knobs of butter (this will help to brown and crisp the surface)
- Place in the middle of pre heated oven for 30 minutes or until the surface starting to brown.
- Remove from the oven and let it cool down for about 5 minutes before serving.
Serve with steamed broccoli florets and a glass of chilled Chrdonnay.