Nathan Outlaw’s Fish Pie

"It has to be one-third cod, one-third salmon, and one-third smoked haddock."

Ingredients

For the mashed potato
  • 3 1/4 lb floury potatoes, such as Maris Piper or russet
  • Scant 1/2 cup butter
  • 7⁄8 cup milk
For the filling
  • 10 1/2 oz cod fillet, skinned
  • 10 1/2 oz smoked haddock fillet, skinned
  • 10 1/2 oz salmon fillet, skinned
  • 4 1/2 cups whole milk
  • Scant 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp finely diced shallots
  • 2 Tbsp gherkins, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp small capers in brine, drained and rinsed
  • 2 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 Tbsp chopped tarragon
  • 1 Tbsp chopped chives
  • 1 Tbsp chopped chervil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the topping
  • 1 1/2 packed cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 8 large eggs

Instructions

For the mash, peel the potatoes, and cut into even-sized chunks. Place in a large pan, cover with cold water, add a large pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer for about 20 minutes, until tender. Drain the potatoes, and let them sit in the colander for a few minutes, then return to the pan. Mash until smooth, and beat in the butter and milk. Season well with salt and pepper, and set aside.

Preheat your oven to 350ºF [180ºC]. For the filling, pour the milk into a large pan and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, cut all the fish into chunks.

Melt the butter in a medium pan over a fairly low heat, and stir in the flour. Cook, stirring, for a couple of minutes, being careful not to let it brown. Gradually stir in the hot milk. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer for about 20 minutes. Take off the heat, and stir in the shallots, gherkins, capers, and herbs. Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste. Add the fish, and toss to combine.

Transfer the seafood and sauce to a 12 in [30 cm] square (or similar) baking dish. Spoon or pipe the mashed potato on top, and scatter over the cheese. Bake for 20 minutes until the topping is golden.

Meanwhile, bring another pan of water to a boil, then carefully add the eggs. Cook for 6 minutes, then drain, and place under cold running water until the eggs are cool enough to handle. Peel the boiled eggs, and cut in half.

When the pie is ready, remove from the oven, and poke the halved boiled eggs into the potato topping. Serve immediately.

About this recipe

“Everyone has their own recipe for a fabulous fish pie. For me, it has to be one-third cod, one-third salmon, and one-third smoked haddock. Too much cod and it’s bland, too much smoked haddock and it dominates, too much salmon and it’s greasy. As for those who make it posh with lobster, shrimp, and scallops, that’s just a waste. I’ve cooked this recipe for two and I’ve cooked it for 200… I think it’s bloody lovely! If you want some veg with it, you can’t go wrong with buttered, minted peas and carrots.” – Nathan Outlaw.

Recipes excerpted with permission from Everyday Seafood by Nathan Outlaw. Photos: David Loftus. Buy Everyday Seafood by Nathan Law at Amazon.

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Ingredients

For the mashed potato
  • 3 1/4 lb floury potatoes, such as Maris Piper or russet
  • Scant 1/2 cup butter
  • 7⁄8 cup milk
For the filling
  • 10 1/2 oz cod fillet, skinned
  • 10 1/2 oz smoked haddock fillet, skinned
  • 10 1/2 oz salmon fillet, skinned
  • 4 1/2 cups whole milk
  • Scant 1/2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 Tbsp finely diced shallots
  • 2 Tbsp gherkins, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp small capers in brine, drained and rinsed
  • 2 Tbsp chopped parsley
  • 1 Tbsp chopped tarragon
  • 1 Tbsp chopped chives
  • 1 Tbsp chopped chervil
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the topping
  • 1 1/2 packed cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 8 large eggs
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