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500g cod fillet, cut into smallish pieces (so it can all sit flat in one pan)

3 medium potatoes, peeled and quartered

2 heaped dessert spoons plain flour

30g butter

600ml milk

2 bay leaves

Knob of butter and dash of milk for the mash

Small handful of chopped fresh parsley

Salt

Pepper

Creamy fish pie

preparation 5 mins • you cook for 22 mins •

Serves 2

Watch a 30 second preview of my cook-along video below

 

A perfect comforting meal for a cold night, this fish pie is packed with flavour. Even if it's never been your thing, do give this version a try as it's such a homely, tasty dish with delicate herbs and creamy mash! I use cod but it works equally well with other fish such as salmon or trout - use your favourite. This is a two part recipe. In part one we cook the fish and potatoes. In part two we make the white sauce and construct the pie.

Saucepan to boil the potatoes

Saucepan to cook the fish in milk

Saucepan to make the white sauce

A 1 litre pie dish

Sieve

Colander

Masher

Spoon to stir

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Before you start, have a pan of salted boiling water on the hob for the potatoes. Put a pan on the hob for the fish. Have the potatoes peeled and chopped and the fish out. Now click here!

Before you start, just have the parsley chopped and a pan ready to make the sauce. Now click here!

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This week, there are two original recipes on my newsletter which will make Christmas that little bit easier, and taste that much better! My Pork & Pickle Stuffing Balls and my Baileys Biscuits. The stuffing recipe is a great alternative to the traditional sage and onion - filled with pork, apple and chunky pickle, it has a real tang to it and is very easy and cheap to make. My very grown-up Baileys Biscuits have a good whack of alcohol and a delicious chewy, oat bite to them - naughtily moreish!

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Put a pan of salted boiling water on the hob then drop in the potatoes. The potatoes should take 15-16 minutes to get to the point that they're ready to mash. Put half of the milk into your other pan and then add the fish, skin side down not overlapping. Put the rest of the milk in, together with the bay leaves and a pinch of salt & pepper. Bring this up to the boil and then simmer gently for 10 minutes.

After 10 minutes preheat your oven to 190c, remove the fish to a board and drain the milk through a sieve into a measuring jug. This milk will be the basis of the white sauce that you're about to make. Drain the potatoes once the point of a knife can pass through them easily then pop them back in the pan on the hob. Turn the heat on low and get mashing. Once you've got rid of all the lumps, add a knob of butter and stir until it's all melted. Next adding a splash of milk at a time, stir the potatoes until they loosen to a nice creamy consistency. Add a pinch of salt and then set this aside whilst you make the sauce.

To make the sauce, turn your other pan on to a low heat and gently melt the butter. Once the butter has melted, turn the heat off and add in 3 heaped dessert spoons of plain flour and then stir the pan to incorporate the flour into the butter. Turn the heat back on low and cook and stir for 1 minute to cook out the flour. Next add a small splash of your milk and stir in. Once the milk has been stirred in, the flour and butter should come together into a ball. At this point, add another dash of milk and repeat the process. Keep doing this and each time you should be able to add a little more milk, as the mix loosens a little. Persevere with this until all the milk has been added and you have a nice thick sauce.

Next stir in the parsley and it's time to build the pie. Take the fish and flake it into the white sauce, discarding the skin. Gently fold in the fish, being careful not to completely obliterate it. Transfer the contents of your pan into your pie dish and then top with mashed potato. Using a knife, very gently spread the top of the pie to flatten out. Lastly, get a fork and make little fork marks all over the potato like in the photo to the right. These little peaks will go nice and crispy in the oven.

Pop the pie in the oven for 30 minutes and then allow to cool for at least 5 minutes and you're done.

I hope that you enjoy it.

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