This fish pie is packed with three different kinds of fish—firm, white-fleshed cod (or another, similar fish); hot-smoked salmon; and shrimp—all of it bathed in a flavorful and creamy sauce. On top, a layer of perfectly browned and buttered mashed potatoes.
Why It Works
- Using a combination of different fish gives the pie a pleasing variety of flavors and textures.
- Smoking your own salmon is an easy, cost-saving step that adds so much flavor to the finished dish, though you can substitute store-bought hot-smoked salmon.
- Top with easy mashed potatoes—no need to fiddle with pastry!
Read more: How to Fall in Love With British Fish Pie
- Yield:Serves 6
- Active time: 1 hour 30 minutes
- Total time:6 hours
- For the Smoked Salmon (see note):
- 1/2 cup (100g) sugar
- 1 tablespoon (15g) Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons (10g) freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons (10g) mustard powder
- 2 teaspoons (10g) freshly grated lemon zest (from about 1 large lemon)
- 1 pound (450g) skin-on boneless salmon fillets (you will need only 1/2 pound for the pie, so you'll have plenty left over)
- 3 cups wood chips or pellets
- For the Filling and Topping:
- 1/2 pound (225g) medium to large shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
- Kosher salt
- 4 tablespoons (60g) unsalted butter, plus 2 more tablespoons (30g) if using panko, plus more for buttering baking dish
- 2 medium leeks, white and light green parts only, washed and finely chopped (8 ounces; 225g after trimming)
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour (1 1/2 ounces; 40g)
- 1/2 cup (120ml) dry white wine
- 1 cup (240ml) whole milk
- 1 cup (240ml) heavy cream
- 1/4 cup (16g) chopped flat-leaf parsley leaves and tender stems
- 3 tablespoons (10g) minced chives
- 2 oil-packed anchovy fillets, finely chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound (450g) cod or other firm, white-fleshed fish fillets (such as halibut, hake, or pollack), skinned, deboned, and cut into 1 1/2–inch chunks
- 1/2 recipe Ultra-Fluffy Mashed Potatoes, made with only 1/2 cup (120ml) milk total
- 1/2 cup (30g) panko bread crumbs (optional)
For the Smoked Salmon: In a small bowl, stir together sugar, salt, pepper, mustard powder, and lemon zest. Place salmon, skin side down, in a glass baking dish. Spread mixture evenly on top of salmon. Cover dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 and up to 12 hours.
If using wood chips, soak them in water at least 1 1/2 hours before you plan to smoke the fish. (Pellets do not have to be soaked.) Light 1 chimney full of charcoal. When all charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and arrange coals on one side of charcoal grate. Sprinkle half the soaked wood chips over the hot coals; you can also use a smoker box or a foil packet with holes punched in it to hold the wood chips or pellets. Place disposable foil pan on empty side of charcoal grate and pour in 1 cup (240ml) water. Place cooking grate on grill. Make sure top and bottom vents are open about 1/4 of the way.
Wipe most of salt mixture off salmon, then place fish, skin side down, on cooler side of grill, directly over foil pan. Close lid on grill and smoke salmon for 10 minutes. Add the remaining wood chips to the grill and continue cooking until salmon reaches 125°F (52°C) in center of thickest part, about 10 minutes longer. Transfer salmon to a plate and cover with aluminum foil. Allow to rest for at least 20 minutes. When cool, remove skin and any bones. Flake half of salmon into roughly 1-inch pieces; reserve remainder for another use.
For the Filling and Topping: Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C) and set rack in middle position. In a medium bowl, toss shrimp with baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Place in refrigerator for at least 15 minutes and up to 1 hour. If shrimp are large or extra large, cut into large chunks before adding to pie.
In a large saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons (60g) butter over medium heat. Add leeks and cook until soft but not browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 2 minutes. Slowly whisk in wine, milk, and cream, stirring well. Bring sauce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Stir in parsley, chives, and anchovies. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper. Gently stir in flaked smoked salmon, cod, and shrimp. Transfer mixture to a buttered 2-quart baking dish.
Top with dollops of mashed potatoes, then use a spatula to spread into an even layer over the entire top of the dish. Make sure to cover edges to prevent sauce from bubbling over. If desired, use the back of a large spoon to create a wavy texture. If using panko bread crumbs, sprinkle on top and dot with remaining 2 tablespoons (30g) butter. Place dish on a rimmed baking sheet and place in oven on center rack. Bake until pie is bubbly and top is golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes, and serve.