Sunday, 10 July 2011
Had a request for a fish pie that doesn't use any difficult ingredients to source. This fish pie recipe is my girls' favourite and is quite easy to prepare and freezes well.
I use a mixed fish base (salmon/cod/pollock/haddock) but if you have a preference you can just use one fish. Whatever you use you need about 450g of fish.
Put it in a saucepan and add a few bay leaves and about 10 peppercorns.
Cover with 500ml milk.
Bring to simmering point and allow to summer for about 5 minutes.
Take off the heat and pour into a seive over a bowl.
Put the cooking liquid back into the saucepan and add 50g butter and 50g flour.
Bring up to simmering point whisking all the time while the sauce thickens.
Take off the heat and add in 50g grated cheddar and a good grating of nutmeg.
Stir until the cheese is all melted.
Pour in a cup of frozen petit pois.
You don't need to pre-cook them since they will cook in the heat of the sauce. Remove the peppercorns and bay leaves from the cooked fish and flake this into the cheese sauce together with a tsp lemon juice and stir everything together after seasoning to taste.
While you are doing all this cook about 600g white potatoes in boiling salted water until soft.
Then drain and add in 2 tbsp milk and 50g butter and mash until smooth. Pour the fish sauce into a greased baking dish and top with the mashed potato.
I usually divide this amount into one dish to be eaten then and then the remainder I freeze in smaller portions to be used at different times.
Some I keep just as sauce and use as a pasta topping. Others I top with potato so I have ready made fish pie.
Finally top the dish with grated cheddar or parmesan.
If you are cooking this straight away it will all still be warm and so you can just put it under a hot grill to crisp up the top and melt the cheese. If you are keeping the prepared dish in the fridge before cooking (or wanting to cook one of the defrosted portions that you had frozen) then you need to cook it at 180 degrees C for about 35 minutes until it is golden and bubbly.
But the inside is still lovely and creamy.
This is the basis of a lovely fish pie and you can adapt it to your tastes. You can change the type of fish you use or also add in seafood if you want to add a bit of a twist. You can also add in a couple of chopped boiled eggs at the same time as the frozen peas. Some chopped parsley added to the cheese sauce also is a nice combination. And you can add in half a cup of single cream to make a real rich sauce. As always just experiment until you find a combination to suit your's and your family's tastes.