POSH FISH PIE
Makes 4 large servings
500g floury potatoes, as above
500g cod fillet
200g raw tiger prawns
30g butter, plus 3 tbsp extra
Salt and black pepper
3 tbsp plain flour
100ml white wine
100ml cream, plus a dash extra for mashing
2 tbsp capers
2 tbsp finely chopped mixed fresh herbs, such as chives, chervil and parsley
8 king scallops, cleaned
2 large handfuls spinach, washed and blanched for 30 seconds
Juice of 1/4 lemon
Grated cheddar, to top
Check out the notes in the above recipe for details on the basics,
then read on.
Set the oven to 190C/375F/Gas Mark 5 to preheat, then (on the hob)
boil the potatoes gently in a pan of salted water for about 20-25
minutes or until soft. Drain into a colander and leave to steam
for a few minutes.
Meanwhile, put the cod and the whole prawns in a snug-fitting baking
dish and pour over the milk, dot with 1 tbsp of the butter and add
a twist of salt and pepper. Cook in the preheated oven for 15
minutes - or on the hob for about 8 minutes - until the fish is
just cooked through. Remove the fish and prawns, strain and reserve
the milk. Flake the fish into large chunks, discarding the skin
and bones, and peel the prawns, discarding their shells.
Turn the oven up to 220C/425F/Gas Mark 7. Meanwhile, melt the 30g
of butter in a wide saucepan over a gentle heat, then stir in the
flour. Do not let it brown. Gradually add the wine, stirring all
the time. Next, mix in the cream and finally some of the milk that
the fish was cooked in. Let it bubble, stirring regularly, to make
a gloopy, but not too thick, sauce. Stir in more milk if needed.
Add the capers, chopped herbs and some salt and pepper, stir through
and taste. Then fold in the raw scallops, the cooked cod and prawns,
and the wilted spinach. Mix in the lemon juice and spoon into an
oven-proof ceramic dish that leaves enough room for a layer of
mash, and leave to cool.
Meanwhile, mash the cooked potatoes with a splash of cream and the
remaining butter, until smooth, seasoning with salt and pepper.
Spoon the mash over the seafood, spread it flat so that it covers
evenly, then ruffle it up with a fork. Finally, shower with the
grated cheese and bake in the oven for about 30 minutes, until
golden. If it browns too quickly, cover with foil.