I’ve been trying to eat more fish lately as I don’t think I have enough in my diet. I’m trying to be a bit better about these things, especially while nursing bubs.
Although I like most types of seafood, I’m pretty fussy about fish. It’s not something that appeals to me all that much and it’s pretty unlikely that that’s what I’ll choose at a restaurant. In saying that, I do really like sashimi, but obviously it’s not easy (or kind to the wallet) to get a hold of fish that is of that standard all the time.
So when I saw Justine Schofield cook her fish pie on an episode of Everyday Gourmet, I decided I would try a version of it because it actually appealed to me. I cut back on some of her ingredients and changed a few things around, based on our own preferences and what was easy for me to pick up from the supermarket. The rich array of seafood in the pie makes it a bit more interesting to eat than your usual fish pie. However, it doesn’t make it a cheap pie, but you can use whatever seafood you like, or you could include more fish than shellfish. You could also substitute the onion with a leek.
Fancy fish pie
8-10 prawns, heads and shells removed (keep aside for stock), deveined
1 dozen scallops
200g skinless, boneless firm white fish (such as gurnard), cubed
200g skinless, boneless salmon, cubed
1 white onion, sliced
3-4 potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 C fish or chicken stock
3/4 C milk
2-3 Tbsp roughly chopped parsley
1 Tbsp roughly chopped dill
1 Tbsp lemon (or lime) zest
handful of bread crumbs
freshly ground black pepper
In a small saucepan, heat up a tablespoon of olive oil and then fry the prawn shells and heads until they turn orange. Pour in the fish/chicken stock and bring to a boil. Turn it down to low and allow it to simmer to infuse the flavours. (This can be for as long as you like – I just did this while I cooked the mash, onion and started on the bechamel.) Strain through a colander/sieve to remove the shells from the stock.
To make the mash, boil the potatoes until soft (about 10-15 minutes). Mash it up with 1/4 C of the milk and a few tablespoons of olive oil. Season to taste.
Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.
Heat up another couple of tablespoons of the olive oil over a medium heat in a pot. Gently fry the sliced onion until softened. Set aside.
To make the bechamel, melt the butter in the same pot that you cooked the onions in. Add the flour and stir well to form a roux. (Make sure you cook out the raw flour taste.) Bit by bit, add your stock, stirring continuously until it boils and thickens. Add 1/2 C milk, still stirring, until it thickens again. (If it’s too thick, just add more milk.) Turn off the heat, stir through the parsley, dill and lemon zest, and then season to taste.
Arrange the fish, scallops and prawns in the bottom of an ovenproof dish. Scatter the onion slices over the top.
Pour the bechamel over everything as well. Spoon the mash over the top and then sprinkle evenly with the breadcrumbs. If you like, you can also grind some black pepper over the top.
Cook in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the seafood is cooked through.
Serve hot with a green salad on the side.