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The ultimate fish pies

  • for 4 people
  • Takes 15 minutes to make, 45-50 minutes to cook
  • Easy
Michelin-starred chef Marcus Wareing has created a fish pie recipe so wonderful that it's been given the lofty title of 'ultimate'. We'll eat our hats here at delicious. if you think otherwise.

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INGREDIENTS

500ml milk
200g hake fillet
200g raw king prawns, cut in half
100g smoked salmon trimmings

(sh) For the mash
900g (3 large) floury potatoes, such as King Edward, peeled and quartered
100ml milk
2 medium, free-range egg yolks
30g unsalted butter, softened

(sh) For the herb sauce
25g butter
2 tbsp plain flour
250ml chicken or vegetable stock
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Small bunch parsley, chopped
Small bunch tarragon, chopped

METHOD

1. Make the mash for the topping first. Place the potatoes in a large pan of cold, salted water, bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes or until cooked through. Drain, then mince with a potato ricer or mash finely. Mix in the milk, followed by the egg yolks and butter, then season and set aside.
2. Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan160°C/gas 4. Place 500ml milk into a saucepan and bring to a very gentle simmer. Add the hake and slowly poach for 4 minutes. Remove the fish, thickly flake, and reserve the milk.
3. Make the herb sauce by melting the butter in a medium saucepan over a moderate heat. Whisk in the flour and cook for a couple of minutes. Add 250ml of the reserved poaching milk (discard the rest) and whisk well. Stir in the stock, nutmeg and season to taste with salt and coarsely ground black pepper. Cook over a low heat until thickened, then remove from the heat, mix in the herbs and fold in the hake, prawns and smoked salmon. Divide the mixture between 4 x 400ml pie dishes then dollop the mash on top. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown and piping hot.

From November 2008

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