Pesto Fish Pie

Pesto fish pie

Fish pie is such an adaptable dish that we don’t even recommend what fish to use. Cod, smoked haddock, and salmon are the classic trilogy, but we’ve been known to add gurnard, hake, and even clams to ours. Just go shopping with an open mind and pick whatever seafood looks best on your fishmonger’s counter.

This is a simple enough dish to make, but it does require some preparation. The beauty is that you can make it ahead of time and just pop it in the oven half an hour before you plan to eat. There is no better recipe to get kids into eating fish, but it’s also impressive enough to serve as a dinner party showpiece.

Pro tip
The addition of pesto to the cheesy Mornay sauce works for any recipe that utilises this versatile roux. That includes cauliflower gratin, scalloped potatoes, macaroni cheese, and many more.

Ingredients for six

Ingredient Quantity
Fish 600g
Mash potato 500g
Whole milk 550g
Pesto 100g
Unsalted butter 35g
Plain flour 35g
Eggs x4
Onion x1
Gruyere 100g
Panko breadcrumbs 50g
Mature cheddar 50g
Garlic cloves x3

Soft-boil the eggs, peel, chop in half and set aside.

Grate the cheddar, combine it with the breadcrumbs and set aside.

Dice the onion and garlic and soften in oil. Set aside.

Make the mashed potatoes using your favourite go-to recipe. We like lots of butter, milk, salt, and a little hint of nutmeg.

To make the sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan and add the flour. Cook for a minute or two, and then slowly stream in the milk, stirring constantly until you have a smooth sauce. Add the pesto, grated Gruyere, onion, and garlic.

In a baking tin, arrange the fish and eggs so that every part of the pie has a good mix of everything. Pour the sauce all over and pipe (or just dollop) the mashed potato on top.

Bake in a 200°C oven for 15 minutes, sprinkle over the cheddar and breadcrumbs, and return to the oven until the topping is crisp and golden-brown, about 10 minutes.

Serving suggestions
Steamed rainbow chard
Honey-glazed carrots and peas
Baked beans and tomato ketchup
Celeriac, leeks, and thyme
Sautéed garlic-butter courgettes