Fishy About Pie or Pie-y About Fish

I was chatting with a friend a few days ago about Mr. Moo’s fish consumption. I realized that he hadn’t had a lot of fish lately because I was kind of stuck for interesting recipes. I like grilled or pan seared fish with very little fuss. The Moo enjoys a fuss. (I created a mini monster!)

Off to my Annabel Karmel recipes to find something exciting for his dinner. What I found was a bit eh—heavy on the fish, light on the vegetables, and containing a bunch of ingredients that I didn’t have on hand. So, I took her “Mommy’s Favorite Fish Pie” from The Healthy Baby Meal Planner and made it my own. The original recipe called for two kinds of fish (cod and salmon). I only had lake trout. I didn’t have any parsley or Cheddar cheese, so I used dried thyme and Parmesan. The recipe only called for onions and tomatoes for veggies. I swapped out the onion with shallots and added a ton of other vegetables. I used the potatoes I had on hand rather than Yukon…

Well, you get the idea. It’s really not Annabel’s recipe anymore.

Lizzie’s (Oh, Wait. I’m a Mommy Too) Fish Pie

Makes 3-4 ramekin-size pies (depending upon your ramekin size)

  • 3 large red skin potatoes, cut into large pieces
  • ¼ C cream
  • ¾ stick butter
  • 2-3 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • ⅓ C frozen green beans, defrosted and chopped
  • ¼ C peas
  • 1½ T all purpose flour
  • Scant 1 C milk
  • 6-8 oz lake trout (so, one fillet), skinned and cut into fairly large cubes
  • 1 t dried thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • ½ C Parmesan, grated
  • 1 egg lightly beaten with a touch of milk
  • Salt and pepper

Cook the potatoes in lightly salted, boiling water until tender (about 15 minutes), then strain. Put cream and half of the butter into a bowl. Run potatoes through a ricer. Mix well.

Preheat oven to 350°.

Melt the remaining butter in a heavy-based sauce pan. Sauté the shallots 2-3 minutes. Add the carrot and sauté for another 2 minutes. Add the chopped tomato, green beans, and peas and sauté for another 2-3 minutes.

Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute (make sure not to have any raw flour bits). Add the milk, bring to a boil, and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the fish, thyme, and bay leaf. Simmer for 3-4 minutes (it will get thick at this point).

Remove bay leaf, stir in the cheese until melted, and season to taste.

Divide fish mixture between ramekins and top with the mashed potato. (I was going to put it in a plastic bag and pipe it over the top so that it looked pretty. But, as always, I got lazy and decided: Glop it on and we’ll call it “rustic.” Besides, I smashed the potatoes with their skins on, so rustic made a bit of sense.)

Brush the potato with lightly beaten egg and bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes. (Remember, everything is already cooked. So, you’re heating to meld the flavors.) Annabel also says you can brown the ramekins under a preheated broiler to brown the tops. Um, I’m trying to get dinner on the table for a toddler after work. Cute browning ain’t gonna happen, kids.

Results

Not surprisingly, it came out a lot like the miniature chicken pot pies I made a few weeks ago. (Hey, it’s getting cold in Chicago. Thick pot pies are the ticket for dinner.) I preferred the mushiness of the potatoes over the dough top of the chicken pot pies.

Fish pie in a heart shaped ramekin

What I don’t understand is why Annabel insists on pairing fish with tomato products. It seems all of her fish dishes contain either tomatoes or ketchup. I chalk it up to her Britishness.

Mr. Moo Eats Fish

Mr. Moo Eats Fish

Mr. Moo’s vote is still out. He seemed to hate the fish, but ate the other ingredients. To be fair, he’s been under the weather for the past few days, and he does not have his eating stomach back. But, there’s time to give it a second try as the other ramekins are destined for the freezer.

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