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Saturday, March 20, 2021

Recipe Round Up: Colcannon Fish Pie

This is a really simple dish to make, and is remarkably tasty. One thing you will need to resist is making the mashed potatoes loose and wet, you want them a bit drier than normal so they crisp up in the oven. This is the quantity I make for my family, but it can easily be made at a third or half of the quantity. Because of Jerome's special diet, we have discovered that you can directly substitute tapioca starch for the flour. If you make a salad or a fruit plate to go with it, you have a pretty good meal.

For the Colcannon:
6 pounds potatoes, peeled
4 leeks, sliced thinly
4 cups finely chopped kale or cabbage
8 tablespoons butter + 4 tablespoons more
1/2 cup half and half or milk
salt and pepper, to taste

For the fish filling:
6 tablepoons butter
3 leeks, sliced thinly
1 1/2 cups white wine, dry vermouth or dry sherry (or add more stock)
6 tablespoons flour or tapioca starch
2 cups fish stock
2 cups milk
salt and pepper, to taste
zest and juice of 2 lemons
1 heaped tablespoon dijon or grainy mustard
3/4 pound cod, halibut, or other white fish fillets
3/4 pound salmon or tuna fillets
1/2 pound smoked trout or smoked salmon

To assemble:
1 cup grated parmesan or other hard, aged cheese

For the Colcannon:

Boil the potatoes in a pot of salted water for 20 minutes or until really soft. Drain and immediately add 8 tablespoons butter. Mash (or mix thoroughly in a food processor). Stir in half and half. Season to taste with salt and pepper

Sauté the leeks in the additional butter until softened and starting to brown. Add kale or cabbage to the butter and cook for another 5 minutes, until softened. I like to season the leeks an kale with a little salt and pepper, too. Fold together the potato, kale and leek. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 400˚F.

For the Filling:

In a pot, sweat the leeks in the butter for 10 minutes until soft. Add the wine (or equal amount of stock) and reduce by two thirds. Add the flour, stir to incorporate and then drizzle in the milk and stock. Stir often and cook on a low simmer for about 10 minutes. Add the lemon zest, juice and mustard and stir to combine.

Trim the fish of any skin and bones and cut into large chunks. In a large casserole dish, about 11" X 15", place the fish around the bottom. Top with the sauce.

Spoon the Colcannon on top in several dollops, then spread them out a little to connect them together so they cover the pie. Use a fork to then fluff up edges and make lines everywhere. Try to keep the mash as high as possible. Sprinkle the parmesan over the top.

Cook in the oven for 45 minutes. Make sure to allow at least 20 minutes to cool before serving. We usually serve ours with steam sautéed green peas with garlic and tarragon, and fruit.

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