Serious Eats

British Bites: Fish Pie

[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

A combination of smoked haddock, fresh cod, and a few shrimp, layered with green peas and hardboiled eggs and finally topped with smooth mashed potatoes—this traditional pie makes for a wonderful fall and winter meal. The combination of smoked and fresh fish is classic for this pie, but you can use a variety of those—and even add to them. This recipe calls for shrimp, but bay scallops are a great addition, as are smoked mussels. And if you're a fan of salmon,, you can absolutely use that for a very different pie.

Many people thicken their poaching liquid with cheddar cheese, or even fold it into the mashed potato topping. I leave it out so that the delicate fish flavor can really be the star of the pie. There are those who choose to leave the hard-boiled eggs out as well, and while I feel that they are a necessary element of the fish pie experience, feel free to use your judgement.

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If you're thinking of this for a winter dinner party, you may want to try dividing the filling between individual pie dishes to give each dinner their own personal pie. Or you could freeze those little pies for when the mood strikes you, or you've had a particularly long day.

This pie hold up well in the fridge so you can make it the day before you plan on baking it with no ill results. A fresh green salad with tart dressing and a cold bottle of white wine or gentle lager are all you need to round out this filling cold-weather meal.

About the author: Sydney Oland lives in Somerville, Mass. Find more information at sydneyoland.com (or read eatingnosetotail.com)

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