Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Comfort Food from the UK

When it comes to trying new recipes, I sort of hunker down in a cookbook and stay awhile. My menu cycle is two weeks long and so this time around I seem to be hanging out with Jamie Oliver. We had the roast beef for Father's Day with those tasty little Yorkies. And today I gave in to a longtime request of my husband's...Fish Pie.

Yeah, I don't know what it is about Brits and their meat pies...but they are into them! I've done Shepherd's Pie, Chicken & Leek Pie, and now (the least appetizing sounding) Fish Pie.

This recipe resembled the Shepherd's Pie in that it is topped with mashed potatoes and lacks a pastry crust. It was simple to prepare and turned out full of flavor and tender texture. These all-in-one dinners are starting to grow on me! But it's no midwest casserole (meaning the proverbial can of Cream of Mushroom Soup). It is surprisingly fresh for, you know, something full of cream and potatoes!

But that's not all that is in the dish. There is a good lot of spinach, flat-leaf parsley, onions, and carrots (rainbow carrots are fun) which I picked up at the beautiful Wednesday Farmer's Market in Kirkland today. Kudos to the city of Kirkland for moving the market to Marina Park! It's probably the most beautiful setting for a farmer's market in the area.

Fish Pie

Preheat the oven to 450. Boil a big pot of salted water and add:

5 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and chopped into 1 inch pieces

Boil 2 minutes, then add:

2 large eggs (carefully)

Boil all this another 7 minutes, then in a steamer tray atop the pot (good luck with this step...tongs were required to keep the steamer from falling in):

1 large bunch of spinach, washed and chopped roughly

Steam one minute or so. Squeeze out the spinach, remove the eggs to some cold water and drain the potatoes in a colander.

In a skillet, saute:

1 large carrot, finely diced (I used 3 small rainbow carrots)
1 large onion, finely diced

Saute for 5 minutes, then add:

1 1/3 c heavy cream

Bring just to a boil, then remove from the heat and add:

1 large handful of finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
juice from 1 lemon
2 big handfuls of Parmesan cheese
1 tsp English mustard (I forgot this ingredient...let me know if it takes this dish over the top!)

In a large earthenware dish place:

1 lb fish (tilapia, cod, haddock) deboned, and cut into strips
the hard-boiled eggs, peeled and quartered
the steamed spinach

Pour the creamy sauce over the top.

Mash the potatoes with some butter, cream, salt and pepper. Spread them over the top of the fish mixture. If you're fancy, you can pipe them on. I sprinkled the top with some more Parmesan cheese. Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Serve with a crusty loaf of bread and a Newcastle.



Jenn said...

This is a nice alternative for anyone who doesn't want to have the meat version. I'll have to give it a try sometime. Looks good!

michelle @ TNS said...

i can't lie, "fish pie" is not an inspiring name. and yet, the final product does look good. and i will eat pretty much anything where mashed potatoes are involved.

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