Compared to some of the amazing bloggers I’m getting to know, I’m no great chef. This time of year the fish I get are usually baked or broiled in some way and I don’t want my small house to stink from using my grill pan or deep fryer. Besides, when it’s blowing 30 mph and the snow is coming down 3 inches per hour, I want something rich and satisfying between shoveling sessions. Yesterday not only did we have the weather for it, I had a bunch of fish on hand to make my first ever fish pie.
I am so lucky to have friends still in “the business.” A good buddy of mine just returned from a fishing trip out of Cape Cod and came home with bags of freshly filleted flounders. There are lots of good flounder to be found in the winter around here: I got some excellent blackbacks (winter flounder) a couple of weeks ago from Cape Ann Fresh Catch – a local co-op/CSF.
My friend hooked me up with an awesome mix of blackback, yellowtail, dab and fluke. It was just like the old days, when family friends would drop by after a trip with bags of haddock, whiting, monkish, gray sole or even a chicken halibut (I miss them most of all).
Flounder Fish Pie with VegetablesCuisine: Seafood, Comfort FoodDifficulty: Easy
With this bag of prized flounder I decided to try a fish pie like celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has listed here.
1.5lbs. Flounder, cut into small chunks
2 cups leftover Mashed Potatoes (approximate)
1/4 cup shredded Cheddar Cheese
1 Celery stalk
2 cloves Garlic
1 Lemon, juice and zest
Salt and Pepper
- Saute aromatics and mushrooms in olive oil, set aside.
- Cut flounder fillets into smaller pieces. Season with salt and pepper.
- Mix fish with vegetables, add lemon juice and zest. Place in a greased casserole dish.
- Add a layer of cheese and then top with mashed potatoes. Use a fork to “rake” the topping and brush with some melted butter or a quick spritz of cooking spray.
- Bake at 350F until golden brown and bubbly, about 40-45 minutes.
- Use instant mashed potatoes if you don’t have leftovers. You can also mix the cheese into the potatoes.
- This will work with any kind of similar white fish if the pieces are cut similarly.
The Verdict on Flounder Fish Pie
So how was it? My wife was apprehensive, but she likes Jamie Oliver so she gave it a try. We were both impressed, even though it was not a radical change from my usual dishes, it was delicious. The small pieces of flounder blended so well with all those veggies and because they were sautéed beforehand, they had lots of flavor without making the pie “soupy.” Also, with 4 different types of flounder, each bite had a slightly different taste.
I figured it would be fine, but now I’m looking forward to having fun with this concept: different veg, herbs, and different fish. The salmon and smoked haddock in the original recipe sound decadent but I imagine nearly any fish/veg combination would create a warm, comforting (and surprisingly not too heavy) fish pie for a cold winter day.
Shout out to my boy ZJ for that unexpected gift of flounder!