Creamy Fish Pie

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Food / Mains / Recipes

There is nothing better than a deliciously creamy fish pie. It is not everyone’s cup of tea, but if you like fish pie, then you will LOVE this recipe. The first time I tried this pie, was as a flat meal in Dunedin… many years ago when I was a poor university student. There are not many recipe’s that I would ever repeat from my scarfie days as they were all frozen veges and mince meals, but this one was a keeper.


  • 2 fillets (800g) of any firm fish (Pollack, cod, haddock) – today I use freshly caught kahawai
  • 750 mL milk
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, finely diced
  • 2 to 3 celery sticks, finely diced
  • 1 or 2 bay leaves
  • handful of chopped parsley
  • handful of whole pepper corns
  • 1 kg of floury potatoes
  • 125g of butter – plus extra to grease the dish and dot on top of the pie
  • 75g plain flour
  • salt and pepper
  • optional: prawns


  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
  • Chop up the potatoes and place in a pot of cold water. Boil the water/potatoes.
  • While waiting for the potatoes to cook, place the fillets of fish in a saucepan (leave prawns to the side). Pour in the milk. Add the vegetables, bay leaf, parsley and peppercorns.
  • When milk is simmering, switch off heat and fish will carry on cooking in the hot milk.
  • Once the potatoes have cooked (fork goes into potato easily), mash with 50g of butter.
  • Once the fish has cooked, place sieve over a jug and tip in the fish and its milk.
  • Add 3 to 4 tablespoons of the fishy milk to the mash and stir it in well. Season with salt and pepper and put the mash to one side.
  • To make the béchamel sauce, melt 75g butter and then add the flour. Let cook for a couple of minutes. Then gently whisk in a third of the hot fishy milk (wait until it has thickened), then another third, and another third, stirring constantly.
  • Remove the peppercorns from the fish and vegetable mixture. Pick up the chunks of fish and check it is bone free. Once the béchamel is ready, add in the fish mixture and prawns.
  • Butter the pie dish and pour in the fish/béchamel mix. Spoon over the mash and spread it carefully. Roughen the mash up with the flat blade of a knife.
  • Dot a little extra butter on top.


  • Bake for 25 minutes at 180 degrees – or until the top is starting to brown.

Serve with buttered minted peas and crusty bread or try this easy pea and asparagus combo.


Servings: 4

Total Time: 15 Minutes


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots
  • 1 bunch thin asparagus spears, ends trimmed, cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces on a diagonal
  • 1 cup thawed frozen peas
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon honey


  • Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and translucent, 4-5 minutes.
  • Add the asparagus, ¼ teaspoon salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Continue cooking over medium-low heat, stirring frequently so the shallots don’t burn, for about 5 minutes or until tender-crisp.
  • Add the peas and honey and cook about one minute more until the peas are warmed through. Add more salt and pepper to taste (I usually add about 1/8 teaspoon more salt and a few twists of pepper) and serve.

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The Author

Snaphappy foodie who is obsessed with travel. Currently living in London, originally from New Zealand.


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