Sunday, April 10, 2011
Fish Pie or as A Canadian Calls It - Fisherman's Pie - Comfort Food
In fact probably 6 weeks since our friend Pete drove up to have a weekend with us.
He will wish he was back there as well, now the weather is cooling down. Swimming and lying in the sun. Heaven.
Below Pete having his constitutional swim. Getting ready for a day of feasting and imbibing.
Full of fish and prawns in a wonderful creamy sauce inside.
Don't be put off by the many steps. You can do this ahead of time.
I reckon you could serve it for a dinner party.
You could individual portions
There is a programme on Food TV called "Everyday Exotic", starring Canadian Roger Mooking.
I don't think Fish Pie is a staple part of the North American diet... as it is for those of us recently descended from British Stock.
He called his version Fisherman's Pie (Shepherd's Pie etc)
It looked tasty so I decided to give it a go.
It relied on making a fish stock.
That is not hard and is a great use of the fish head and bones
Just takes a little bit of time.
You make a stock which turns into the sauce.
Saute some vege
Mash some potatoes
Assemble and Bob's your Uncle.
Choose your whole fish
Get the Fishmonger to filet and skin it for you and pop the bones in a bag
For 4 people
Whole fish filleted and skinned with bones for the stock
You need 200 gms per person
4 prawns per person
For The Stock
1/2 bulb Fennel
1 stalk Celery
1 Onion Peeled
Bay leaves 3
1 cup of white Wine
Chop up the vegetables roughly
Add everything to a large stock pot
Add salt about 1 teaspoon
Bring to the boil and simmer about 20 minutes
Don't cook to long it can become bitter
Bring back to boil
Cook about 10 minutes to reduce the stock for the maximum flavour
Taste and season with extra salt and pepper if needed
Meanwhile prepare The Vegetables
The hot fish stock gives lots of flavour to the vegetables
1 Carrot chopped small cubes
White part of 1 Leek sliced finely
1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter
1 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup reserved stock
Sea Salt and freshly Ground Black pepper
Gently sauté carrot and leek in oil and butter
Till they soften
Season with S & P
Add hot stock
Cook about 5 minutes
Simmer till stock absorbed
Remainder of the stock
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons plain flour
1/4 cup cream
4 sprigs fresh Tarragon
Mix butter and flour together
This is your thickening agent
The French call it Beurre Manier
Bring the sauce to the boil
Add the Beurre Manier
and stir well till it thickens
Use a whisk so it doesn't get lumpy
Add tarragon and cream
Now The Potato Topping
3 large peeled potatoes
100 mls milk
2 tablespoons butter
2 egg yolks
The best result for mashed potatoes is using a ricer
It gets rid of all the lumps but use a potato masher or fork if you wish
Cut the potatoes into large chunks
Cover with cold water
Bring to boil and simmer till they are tender
Drain in a colander and return to the pot
Heat the milk and butter together and add to the potatoes
Beat all together for a really good result
Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary
Now for the assembly
A light layer of the sauce over the bottom of your gratin dish
Place fish and prawns on top
Season with salt and pepper
Cover with sauce and then the mashed potatoes
Into 190C oven for about 25 minutes till golden brown and bubbling
Don't eat too quickly, you will burn the roof of your mouth
Take this from one greedy person who knows!!!
Dale waving me goodbye, as he is about to take off for his journey, sailing home.
I drove home in 4 hours
He took 3 leisurely days, working his way through his little Freezer Packages.
I know he wishes he was still up there in Paradise.