This is a delicious dish that was originally made with the off-cuts of fish that would otherwise have been wasted. Although we don’t cook it for the same reason anymore it still gives you a great deal of flexibility in what ingredients to use.
Traditionally, fish pie (or fisherman’s pie) includes smoked fish as one of the characteristic flavors of the dish. You don’t necessary have to add it, but it does make the dish richer and more flavorsome. We used smoked trout and it fitted just great. Also, traditionally, quartered hard-boiled eggs are included in the mixture. We don’t know why, but they are. We haven’t.
Preparation & cooking time: 70-80 minutes
350g any fish (we used equal quantities of salmon, cod and smoked trout)
100g prawns (parboiled and peeled)
70g celery (1 stick)
110g leek (1 large)
2 cloves of garlic
Half a bunch of fresh dill
500ml fish stock
150ml white wine
100ml double cream
40g plain flour
40g unsalted butter
1kg mashed potato
Make the mashed potato and set aside.
Peel and dice the onion. Chop the celery and leek into ½cm pieces. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Finely chop the dill. Remove the skin and bones from the fish and cut it into 2cm cubes. Preheat the oven to 200°c.
In a saucepan, heat the butter and, when it has melted, put in the onion, celery, leek and garlic. Cook it over a medium heat for 15 minutes until the onion is very soft. Add the flour to the pan, thoroughly mix it in, then add the white wine and stir that in until the flour and wine have combined.
Pour in 150ml of the stock and stir that in until it has become combined, then add another 150ml of the stock and stir that to combine. Finally, add the remaining stock and stir it in. Then bring the mixture up to the boil, turn down the heat slightly and simmer it until it has reduced by half (about 5-10 minutes).
Add the fish, but not the prawns, turn the heat down to medium and gently cook it for 5 minutes.
Add the cream and the dill, season it with salt & pepper, gently stir it (so as not to break up the fish) and then carefully tip the contents of the pan into an oven proof dish. Then put in the prawns.
Cover the mixture with the mashed potato by first putting spoonfuls around the edge of the dish and then filling in the middle. Smooth the surface of the mashed potato with a knife and then lightly drag a fork across to form a ridged pattern.
Put the dish on to a baking tray and into the oven for 20 minutes. If the top is not browned enough by this time, put the dish under a hot grill for 5 minutes (or until the top is brown enough).