February 18, 2009

Fish Pie

Fish Pie
MUNCH RATING: 2/5

All the recipes I had for fish pie were for 6 to 8 people, so I've made a recipe to serve 2 which is easy to double/triple. I made individual pies using little tapas dishes.

They are an ideal dish to prepare in advance, as you make them and then refrigerate overnight. If you do this then I would let them come to room temperature before baking in the oven.

I used salmon and white fish, but some nice smoked haddock would be great in this too. If we'd had some small cooked prawns I would have added those too, but times are hard so we can't afford that luxury!

I served the pies with Creamy Cheesy Leeks which uses some of the white sauce for the pies and they're really delicious.
  • Serves: 2
  • Oven temperature: Gas mark 5/375°F/190°C moderate/hot
  • You will need: 2 oven proof dishes that can each hold 1/2 pint (250ml) 

Ingredients:
FOR THE FILLING 
  • 250ml (1 cup) milk
  • 25g (1 oz) butter
  • 25g (1 oz) flour
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 spring onions, finely chopped - green and white parts separated
  • 250g (9 oz) fish (I used 2 salmon portions with skins removed and 1 portion thin white fish)
  • Salt and pepper
FOR THE POTATO TOPPING
  • 500g (17 oz) potatoes, peeled and cut into 1cm dice
  • 25g (1 oz) butter
  • 2 Tablespoons milk
  • Salt and pepper 25g (1 oz) grated cheddar cheese (optional) 

Directions:
  1. First make the potato topping: Boil the potatoes in water until soft and tender. Drain then mash with the butter and milk over a low heat. Stir in the green parts of the spring onions. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Now poach the fish: Pour the milk into a pan and bring to the boil. Add the fish and gently simmer for about 5 minutes, until just cooked. Lift the fish onto a plate to cool slightly and reserve the hot milk. Break the fish into large chunks, putting them into your dishes.
  3. Next make the white sauce: Melt the butter in a small saucepan and add the flour. Cook for about 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the reserved hot milk a little at a time, constantly stirring and simmer for about 5 minutes until you have a smooth, thick sauce. Add the white part of the spring onion. Allow the sauce to cool for a few minutes before mixing in the egg yolk. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Pour the sauce over the fish, reserving about 4 Tablespoons for the leeks. (If you're using prawns then you would add then at this stage).
  5. Assemble your pies: spread the mashed potato on top of the pies and sprinkle the cheese over the top. Put the pies onto a baking sheet and bake them for 15-20 minutes until the piping hot and they are nice and golden brown.

CREAMY CHEESY LEEKS:
  1. Wash 2 medium leeks, cut in half lengthways and then slice thinly into half-moons.
  2. Melt a knob of butter in a pan and add the leeks. Gently fry until coated in the butter and then add a splash of water. Fry the leeks until nicely softened.
  3. Add the reserved white sauce and a handful of grated cheese and mix well. Season with salt and pepper and serve.


PHOTOGRAPHY UPDATE: I used my new Photo Tent to take this photo and used 2 bedside lamps. I'm quite pleased with the result, but I am going to buy some angled desk lamps with trumpet bulbs as they produce white light (5000k daylight balanced neutral colour). Credit goes to Steve for a little Photoshop airbrushing!

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