This afternoon I am playing catch-up, posting something that I actually made a few weeks ago: Fish and Porcini Pie. As long-time readers would know, this is not the first fish pie that I have posted, and I have cooked a lot more in between that I haven't posted. However according to darling husband, this is the best fish pie recipe I have tried out. Now, I really love most fish pies for their incredibly soft and comforting flavours and textures - it is truly the nanna rug in my dinner repertoire (that metaphor doesn't really work but I'm sure you get what I mean). Nigella herself says that even an imperfect fish pie is a delicious one. I just wish it looked prettier. Fish pie tends to be a bit of a melange of beige, and is nearly impossible to photograph and make look appealing. Or it is for me with my very limited styling and photography skills.
On that basis, this is not something that I would ever cook for company, but for a family meal, it is terrific. The porcini makes it slightly more elegant than usual, and I like having a mix of fish. This dish is incredibly easy to eat - you could manage it all with a spoon if you were that way inclined, and for that reason, I gave a second fish pie to a girlfriend with a broken arm. Both her family and my family devoured it, so even you fish pie-doubters out there should give this a try.
This was meant to be for the family favourites week at I Heart Cooking Club but I missed the deadline, so am now sending it to them for their pot luck round-up. You would be very lucky if this turned up at a pot luck dinner!
Fish and Porcini Pie
from "How To Eat" by Nigella Lawson
10g dried porcini
300ml fish stock (buy it from good delis or fish shops)
175g skinned cod (I used Blue Eye)
175g skinned smoked haddock (couldn't get this so I upped the amounts of the other fish)
175g skinned salmon
3 bay leaves
60g plain flour
1.25kg mashing potatoes
Extra milk and butter for mashing
Cover the porcini with boiling water and leave for 20 mins. Remove the mushrooms and strain the soaking liquid into the stock. Butter your pie dish. Put the fish in a single layer in a wide deep pan and cover with milk, the stock and the bay leaves. Bring to a simmer then poach the fish for about three mins. Remove the fish to the pie dish and break into chunks. Sieve the cooking liquid into a jug.
Finely chop the mushrooms. Melt butter in a frying pan and fry the mushrooms gently for 2 mins. Stir in the flour and continue frying for another 2 mins. Remove from heat and slowly add the poaching liquid stirring as you go. If the mixture is not already thick, put back on the heat and stir gently until thickened. Pour over the fish.
Boil and mash the potatoes. Preheat oven to 180C. Spread the mash on top of the fish mixture, bake for 20-40 mins, depending on how hot everything was when it went into the oven.