Day One+London+Fish Pie

Ok, so I am cheating  just a tad here. I started my project on Sunday, actually a few days before. It was not panic buying but forward planning.

We usually go to Billingsgate, the Fish Market for London, and for much of the UK. It means an early morning outing, we have to drive so we go on a Saturday. By 7 am trading is almost over for the day so it really has to be a very early start. However, for whatever reason, we have not been in a while and obviously we abandoned any idea of visiting there now. What to do, what to do? I googled online fish delivery sites, and having recently been to Whitby Yorkshire, the home of the Whitby Catch, I knew that these sites existed.

I found plenty, from Whitby to Scotland, to Wales, to Ireland and to Devon and Cornwall, They all looked tempting fresh fish, packed and delivered to my door. My next question, was, what was I going to buy. Normally when at Billingsgate, we have a wander around and then decided, a whole Salmon, here or 30 Sea Bass, there or maybe vacuum packed Tuna. Much of the produce needs seeing to, inso much as  cleaning, skinning boning, etc. I already knew how to do this, from my childhood, catching our own fish, but Himself needed instruction, and now he is a dab hand. The advantage of the “do It Yourself” is, Stock!! After such a trip I always have stock, which I freeze. Sadly today the stock has been disposed of, no more room in the freezer! Back to what fish I was going to buy. I finally settled on a company called ISHFish, because it offered a selection box. Not as a Christmas selection box of Chocolates but a selection box of Fish. My box contained, 4 portions of Salmon, 4 of Cod, 2 of Haddock, 2 Sea Bass, 2 Smoked Haddock a packet of Smoked Salmon and 500 grams of Fish Pie Mix. I could have added extras to this but did not. It came in a matter of days, all vacuum packed ready to freeze and packed in ice. I was duly impressed.

Hence, the dinner of choice was obvious. Fish Pie. I have made my version of Fish Pie for years, but was there an alternative out there? and the answer is Yes of course, and so here it is the lates version. With Apologies to  Richard Corrigan at Bentleys.IMG_9050

For the Sauce

  •  100 Grams butter
  • 150 mls white wine
  • 1 1/2 pints regular milk ( or 1 pint milk and 1 1/2 pint cream if you are being very wicked)
  • 100 grams flour or 1 Tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 tablespoon English Mustard
  • a good shake of Tabasco or other hot sauce, to taste
  • Squeeze lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • For the Pie
  • 1 Kilo potatoes + a small amount butter or olive oil.
  • 2 eggs hard boiled, roughly chopped
  • 500 grams mixed fish, if you have shrimp so much the better
  • 200 grams smoked haddock
  • grated parmesan ( or Emmental for the topping)
  • 100 grams butter
  • 2 crushed cloves garlic
  • 1 chopped onion
  • piece of chopped ginger

To cook the fish, sweat the onions, garlic and ginger together, add half a pint of milk and then add the fish and simmer gently until cooked.

Boil the potatoes until cooked and then  mash roughly with a little butter or olive oil.

I make the sauce by putting the butter, milk, white wine and flour/ corn starch into a Microwave jug and heat at one minute intervals and stir in-between each heating. The mixture will amalgamate and if by any chance it goes lumpy, never fear, a whisk, preferably an electric one, will soon sort it out. Taste and add seasoning, along with the lemon juice, english mustard and tabasco to taste.

Mix the fish and the sauce together along with the chopped eggs.

Put into a casserole dish, top with the mashed potatoes and finally the cheese. can decorate with some tomatoes as well. Bake for about  20-30 mins at about 180 C.

Serve piping hot, maybe with some salad. And for the left overs, put into portions when cold and freeze. defrost before reheating.



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