Don’t ask me why but my mum and Nana always used to say Friday was fish day, it possibly had something to do with Christians fasting on Wednesdays and Fridays and giving up luxury foods such a meats but that’s seen as rather old fashioned now and was mostly carried out by Orthodox Christians I think. Mum is church of England and Nana was Baptist so I’ll go with tradition as to why they said Friday was fish day. So on Fridays we’d either grab scrumptious fish n’ chips from the local chippie or we would have some kind of fish dish. Mum’s fish pie is delicious and I made it recently for my hubby and his Czech friend who loved it so I’d like to share it with you too. It’s so easy and a case of just throwing it all in and shoving it in the oven!
Hope you like it!
What you need to know:
Prep time: 30mins
Cook time: 2hrs
Oven temp.: 200 °C fan oven
Ingredients for 6 portions:
30cm x 18cm x 7cm casserole dish or thereabouts
Veggies should equal 2/3 of dish:
grated x2 carrots
grated x2 celery sticks
grated half courgette
handful of spinach (fresh/frozen)
good handfuls of broccoli and/or cauliflower (fresh/frozen)
beans/peas/sweetcorn/chillies (use the veg that you like)
grated 150g/5oz cheddar cheese
x2 medium eggs
300-500ml/1/2 to 1 pint milk or cream
(depends on the size dish, needs to be well drenched)
100g/4oz gluten-free flour
150g/4oz x3 different types of fish-great for using up odd bits.
(Try to have one smoked type like mackerel or smoked haddock)
tbsp olive oil or little butter
5 spice powder or dill
x2 bay leaves (optional)
handful of parsley dried or fresh
For mash potato:
5 largish potatoes, enough to cover whole dish
dab of butter or margarine
splash of milk or cream
pinch of salt and pepper
1. Peel and boil around 5 large potatoes, you can use floury or sweet potatoes whichever you prefer, so long as you have enough mash to cover the whole casserole dish.
2. While the potatoes are boiling layer the veggies (fresh or frozen )in the bottom of the casserole dish. Grate the carrots, celery, courgette and cheese straight in. Save a little cheese to sprinkle over the top of the mash at the end.
3. Cut the fish into bite size pieces, make sure you get as many bones out as possible and layer on top of the veggies.
4. Break the two eggs over the fish and veg and pour in the milk and gluten-free flour. I used 400ml milk for mine.
5. Add the spices, parsley, salt and pepper and/or chillies and any other flavours you want to play with here and add a tbsp of butter or olive oil whichever you prefer and mix everything together using two large spoons. Make sure everything is coated well, the eggs are mashed in and the flour is absorbed. It should look nice and gooey and moist.
6. Drain the potatoes once cooked and add a splash of milk or cream, dab of butter and pinch of salt and pepper and mash away until you have the consistency you like (either lumpy or smooth!)
7. Spread the mash potato over the veggie and fish mix and using a fork or spoon make sure the mash goes to all the corners. The mash will act as a seal so the fish and veggies can steam bake under the mash.
8. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over the top of the mash and put in the oven for about an hour at 200 degrees. After an hour check to see if the inside is cooked by dipping a knife or skewer into the middle. If the knife/skewer is hot and there isn’t any ‘crunching’ from piercing frozen or uncooked veggies then it’s done. If the metal knife/skewer is cold pop it back in the oven and keep checking every 10 mins until you’re sure it’s done. The top should be yellow golden and the food piping hot. You may seem some oil bubbling along the top sides of the dish which is a good sign the food under the mash is hot and cooked.
9. Remove from oven and serve with a green salad or on it’s own. Try with ketchup or tar tare sauce and enjoy!
Tip: You don’t need to pre-cook the veggies or fish but if you are in a rush you can half steam or par-boil/poach them while you’re boiling the potatoes and it should cut down the oven time to around just 20-30mins.