East Meets West


On our last evening in England with our British relatives, we decided to join forces and create a meal out of two “comfort food” dishes that each of us had either grown up with, or grown to love over time. The British contingent opted for a fish pie, while the Middle Eastern half (namely me) decided to combine two comfort dishes into one: gheymeh (whose recipe you will find in one of my previous entries) and a French favourite of mine, ratatouille. You might find this concoction of flavours completely sacrilegious, but I assure you, the end result was a success. In particular, the creaminess of the fish pie balanced out the acidity in the Gheymeh, and by keeping the latter vegetarian, the fish pie stood out as the heartier option of the two. When you think about what grows together, goes together, I think nothing compares when East meets West to create a blend of Mediterranean flavours, including those of eggplant, zucchini, tomatoes, garlic, and garden herbs combined with the delicate flavours of fish. A big thanks to Gemma, Pat, and Eloise for the recipe, and by their accounts, this is one for the recipe file, as you will want to make it again and again!

Gemma’s Fish Pie

Pie Filling:

1 kg of fish ( 500 g of white fish and 500 g of salmon, or 700g white fish, 200 g scallops, and 100 g prawns ).

150 ml of dry white wine

275 ml fish stock (or vegetable stock)

2 bay leaves

50 g of butter

50 g of plain flour

2 very generous tablespoons of crème fraiche or sour cream

6 cornichons finely sliced

1 tablespoon of chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon of chopped fresh dill

Pie Topping:

900 g potatoes

1 generous tablespoon capers

50 g butter

50 g cheddar cheese

Preparation:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 F.
  2. Peel and boil potatoes for 12 minutes
  3. Poach fish in simmering wine, stock, bay leaf and salt and pepper for 5 minutes. Then strain the liquid into a bowl.
  4. Make a roux (add flour and butter over heat), then add strained fish stock gradually and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  5. Whisk in crème fraiche, cornichons, parsley and dill.
  6. Grate slightly cooled potatoes into a bowl.
  7. Add capers and melted butter, then toss well.
  8. Remove skin from fish (if necessary), divide into chunks and combine with the sauce.
  9. Add scallops and prawns (if using).
  10. Spoon mixture into well buttered baking dish
  11. Sprinkle potatoes on top, then cheese.
  12. Bake for 35-40 minutes.

Enjoy!

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About danirenouf

I have been a registered dietitian since 2003, and very fortunate to have had the opportunity to work in industry, clinical nutrition, public health, and private practice. Currently, I am extremely excited about pursuing entrepreneurial ventures which start with my private consulting practice and branch out into the food and culinary industry. I am busy every day developing my own food products and recipes, adapting traditional cooking techniques and incorporating new and innovative ways to prepare nutritious, delicious food. I am passionate about everything food-related, and aspire to engage others in "getting to know their food" - not all of us are cooks, or need to be, but all of us need to eat.
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