Classic Fish pie


A classic, simple fish pie is hard to beat, especially with the bounty of local fish landed around the shores of our wee island. This recipe is nutritious, easy and can be cheap to cook. Ask your fishmonger to sell you chunks of fresh, locally caught and seasonal fish.

A classic fish pie should always contain fish, leeks, milk, butter and potatoes; it is an all-in-one supper but I like to serve it with buttered green bean, also freshly cooked peas, broad beans or other fresh greens will do just as well.

The is a very popular dish in our world famous cocktail bar, where we serve it in individual copper pans, but when cooking this dish at home it is best served in a large dish for the whole family to share.


Serves 4

500 ml milk
250g fresh local fish, ask your fishmonger for a selection of pieces
200g pale smoked haddock, cut into pieces
1 bay leaf
500g potatoes (maris piper), peeled and quartered
80g butter
1 onion finely chopped
1 medium sized leek, the white, washed and finely sliced
55g plain flour
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
1tblsp finely chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper


Heat the oven to 180°C
Pour the milk into a large saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer. Add the fish pieces and bay leaf and remove from the heat. Leave the fish to sit in the milk for 10-12mins. Remove the fish pieces with a slotted spoon and keep to one side. Reserve the liqueur.

Place the potatoes into a large saucepan, cover with cold water and add a pinch of salt. Bring to the boil, cover and reduce the heat and cook until the potatoes are tender.

Melt the butter in a medium sized saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onion and sliced leeks and cook for 5 minutes until the leeks are soft, add the flour and stir well with a wooden spoon. Pour the fish milk a ladle at a time into the pan, making sure that all the milk has been incorporated before adding the next ladle. When all of the milk has been added raise the temperature and bring to the boil, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 5mins, stirring all the time, until the sauce is slightly thickened. Turn the heat off and add the fish, lemon zest and rind and the chopped parsley. Adjust seasoning and Leave to one side.

Once the potatoes are cooked, drain and return the hot pan to the stove, add a little butter and milk, mash together until very smooth

Place the fish and sauce into an ovenproof dish, cover with a thick layer of mashed potato either by piping from a piping bag and large nozzle and using a fork, lightly fluffing the surface, place dots of butter all over the surface of the potatoes. Put the dish onto a baking sheet and cook in the center of the preheated oven for 20 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling beneath the potatoes. Serve immediately.

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