How to Make the Tastiest Fish Pie
Making a Fabulous Fish Pie Fit For a Feast!
If you've never tasted a good fish pie before, I have the best recipe in the world for you. Using good, fresh ingredients are the key to any recipe, none more so than this one.
So, potter off down to your local fish monger, fish merchant or fish supplier and get the ingredients for this fabulous fish pie, then we'll start. Oh, and don't forget some good potatoes for the topping. I'm sure you'll find the rest of the ingredients in your kitchen.
This dish has been a family favorite for years and years it never fails to please. Therefore, imminently I'm going to rustle up the best and tastiest fish pie ever to fondle your palate and fuel a feast fit for a Pharoah - and his queen - and I suppose his subjects too!
One last thing, it's official that eating oily fish at least once a week increases brainpower, so get the fishing rod out and what are you waiting for?
Created on 27 March 2013
All photos Â© Rob Hemphill
A Love of Fish Was Born
By living near the sea
I first came across this fish pie recipe in Delia Smith's Complete Cookery Course book more than 25 years ago. Having tweaked it a bit here and there over time, especially when I didn't always have the right ingredients, this is the recipe I now use most of the time.
The original recipe only includes white fish; however, I've found that having a small amount of salmon in it, actually adds some extra flavor and color.
We are lucky to get very fresh fish all the time due to our close coastal proximity. Saying that, it has been known for us to wander down to the local fisherman's hut, where they prepare and sell the fish from, to collect a large cod wrapped in newspaper. And this cod was still flapping! The fisherman explained to us, "Leave it for a day or two it's too fresh."
The rugged coastline off Cornwall in the south west of England.
Fish Recipe Books
Any white fish, such as haddock, cod or whiting can be used for this delicious recipe. I've even used some salmon in this particular recipe.
- Prep time: 20 min
- Cook time: 1 hour 20 min
- Ready in: 1 hour 40 min
- Yields: 6
- 1 1/2 lb white fish and salmon (700 g) - (1/3rd salmon and 2/3rds white fish)
- 1 pint milk (570 ml)
- 4 oz butter (110 g)
- 2 oz plain flour (50 g)
- 4 oz peeled prawns (110 g)
- 2 hard-boiled eggs - roughly chopped
- 1 tablespoon capers - drained
- 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ~~~~For the topping ~~~~
- 2 lb freshly boiled potatoes (900 g)
- 2 oz butter (50 g)
- 4 tablespoons milk
- a little freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 oz mature Cheddar cheese (25 g) - grated
- Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 6, 400Â°F (200Â°C).
- 1. Begin by arranging the fish in a baking tray and seasoning it well with salt & pepper.
- 2. Then pour over half of the milk and put flecks of butter 4 oz (25 g) over the fish. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes.
- 3. Next pour off (and save for use later) the cooking liquid and remove the skin from the fish. Flake the flesh into average size pieces.
- 4. Now make the sauce: Melt the remaining 3 oz (35 g) butter in a saucepan, stir in the flour and gradually and add the saved fish cooking liquid - stirring well after each addition. Once all the liquid is in, finish off the sauce by slowly adding the milk and seasoning with salt and pepper.
- 5. Next mix the fish into the sauce, along with the hard-boiled eggs, prawns, capers and parsley (now taste to see if any more seasoning is required), then stir in the lemon juice. Now pour in the whole mixture into a well-buttered 2 1/2 pint (1.5 liter) baking dish.
- 6. Mash the cooked potatoes with milk and butter, season with salt and pepper and add the nutmeg. Spread the mixture evenly over the fish. Smooth the surface of the potato and with a fork level off while leaving a pattern in rows.
- 7. Sprinkle the cheese all over the potato then bake on a high heat for around 30-40 minutes, or till heated and browned.
- 8. Garnish with some parsley.
- Recipe based on Delia Smith's Fisherman's Pie: Delia Smith Online
The fish is all seasoned with the flecks of butter on, and it's now ready to go into the oven.
Before The Potato Topping Goes On
The secret to a good fish pie is obviously having really good fresh fish and also making sure the fish is not over cooked and remains moist and succulent. Adding the white sauce keeps the whole dish together. What you don't want is to leave the dish in the oven too long so as to dry everything out.
North Atlantic salmon has the most wonderful loose texture so doesn't appear too dense - all this ensures that you will end up with a fabulous fish dish.
Fish Or Meat?
Do you think that eating fish or meat is better for you?
Meat - man/woman has always eaten meat!
Delia Smith's Complete Cookery Course
When I first started cooking, Delia Smith was the name of the time, her straight forward approach and exciting recipes made this book the one favorite most people would have.
I've worked my way through dozens of her recipes, from meat balls and stews to roasts and fish pies, not to mention all those gorgeous desserts. Her marmalade recipe is another that never fails.
A Fish's Journey - The coast, harbour and kitchenClick thumbnail to view full-size
Jamie's 15-Minute Meals
Jamie Oliver is unquestionably one of the most famous TV chefs in the world. Before he produced this 15 Minute Meals book he had tremendous success with the 30 Minute Meals version.
He has thoroughly researched the recipes making sure they're methodical, and fun to cook and full of loads of flavors. His inspiration, gathered from around the world embraces the tastes and styles we love. Armed with these quick recipes you'll be able to turn out a variety of tasteful meals in next to no time at all!
Eat Oily Fish and Boost Brainpower
Yes, it's official.
It really is true that eating oily fish can boost brainpower. BBC Science have researched this and have published an article entitled The Omega Wave which explains atrial they have undertaken to prove the point.
It has been shown that these oils, or polyunsaturated fatty acids as they are better known, are beneficial to our heart and brain function, as well as our overall well-being. Oily fish is especially rich in omega 3 fats in its natural form which makes it readily available for the body to use easily.
What fish are high in Omega 3?
What is it about oily fish?
The body is unable to make essential fatty acids so these have to obtained through diet. The best sources for these are the following foods:
soya beans and soya bean oil
Waiting For the Tide
Other Fish Pie Recipes
- BBC GoodFood Fish Pie Recipes
So many fish pie recipes to choose from.
- Gordon Ramsay's fish pie
Another favorite British chef - you love him or not - but his recipes are superb.
- Recipes from Rick Stein
Rick Stein lives in Cornwall, England and has been a highly rated fish chef for many years. What he doesn't know about fish is not worth knowing!
The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Fish & Shellfish of the World
This is one of those beautiful natural history books that it's lovely to have around for reference. But apart from that, this illustrated book is a comprehensive guide to aquatic wildlife. There's so much fascinating information on so many topics, such as fish, sharks, seals, shells, crabs, corals, jellyfish, rays, reptiles and even whales.
Over 1700 illustrations, photographs and maps adorn the pages of this book, so we get to know more about our extraordinary world with its diverse animal life of the deep oceans.
"Omega 3s can improve brain function at the very simplest level, by improving blood flow"
Dr Alex Richardson