I love fish pie, and it’s often something I would order when eating out. I have always thought of fish pie as a difficult dish that requires a lot of food prep.
While this isn’t my easiest recipe to make, it is not challenging at all. In fact, the most challenging part is the washing up afterwards as the full recipe requires the use of 3 pans. And I have just 3 pans at home! So for myself, it does use all the pans. You could skip poaching the fish in the milk to save washing an extra pan, and this won’t impact on the flavour too much, but it is such a simple step it really is worth doing it.
Don’t have vermouth? You can swap it out for some white wine, sherry, or replace it with an extra 50ml of milk to keep it friendly for the kids.
My Fish Pie recipe is also reasonably healthy. It contains a portion of calcium from the milk and cheese, a portion of fish (half oily too for omega 3 fatty acids), contains a mixture of vegetables and herbs for plant diversity, and doesn’t use any cream to make the sauce. Additionally, each portion of the pie, without the peas, provides over 9g of fibre thanks to leaving the skins on the potatoes.
I’m serving my fish pie with peas. You can add the peas into the sauce and bake them in the pie, but I found they got overcooked and lost their gorgeous vibrant green colour. Additionally, you could opt to serve with any other vegetable of your choice, for example, seasonal Spring asparagus, Winter Broccoli or even a salad in the summer months.
If you make this pie in advance and bake it from cold, be sure to add on an extra 5-10 minutes to ensure it gets cooked all the way through, especially if you are using raw prawns. The layer of smashed potatoes on the top are fantastic at insulating the middle section of the pie so it just needs a little extra time in the oven to ensure it is piping hot throughout.
Serve 4 adults
- 900g potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 fillets of salmon, skinned and boned
- 2 fillets of smoked haddock, skinned and boned
- 400ml semi-skimmed milk
- 50ml Vermouth
- 1 onion, cut in half through the root
- 6 cloves
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 large or two small leeks, approximately 300g, sliced
- 65g butter
- 50g plain flour
- 10g dill, chopped
- 15g flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 100g raw prawns, deveined
- 15g chives, chopped
- 60g cheddar cheese, grated (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180°C fan/200°C convection
- Bring a large pan of water to the boil and cook the potatoes for 20 minutes till almost cooked through.
- Meanwhile, poach the fish in the milk with the bay leaves and half an onion studded with the cloves. Bring to the boil and then turn the heat off. Cover with a lid and allow to poach for 5 minutes.
- In a separate plan gently cook the remaining half of onion, finely sliced, and leeks with 40g of the butter over a low heat till soft.
- Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute.
- Remove the fish from the pan and break into large chunks in an ovenproof dish, reserving the milk.
- Pour a quarter of the milk into the leeks and stir till thick. Keep adding the milk to make the sauce.
- Add the parsley and dill to the sauce before pouring over the fish. Top with the prawns.
- Drain the potatoes, and lightly smash with the remaining butter. Add the chives and then top the pie.
- Top the pie with cheese and bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes till golden brown on the top and bubbling.
- Serve with the peas on the side.
Per portion of pie: 569kcal/ 33.1g fat/ 14.5g saturated fat/ 64.8g carbohydrates/ 9.1g fibre/ 48.3g protein