Thursday, October 24, 2013

Recipe for Fish Pie - Bluefish that is!

In New Jersey, fall is the season of alligator bluefish. Surprisingly, bluefish have fallen out of favor in NJ as table fare, but we like them a lot. In particular we like a bluefish pie recipe very much. It requires a little effort to make, and looks deceptively simple, so you may not get as much credit as you deserve for making it, but it is delicious. It has come to the level of comfort food in our home. Some have chicken pot pie, we have fish pie.

Jennifer Paterson, one half of the Two Fat Ladies, said she thought that a fish pie was something you could serve that was "always admired".

We catch bluefish jigging, trolling, and wire line trolling in the fall. These are listed in order of preference. Jigging is the best, and we just enjoyed the fruits of our labors in the form of one of these delicious pies (or casserole).

This recipe is good with either fresh or frozen fish, and I prefer to use the big ones for this recipe.

This recipe is adapted from a Recipe Zaar recipe, (now here is the link Fish Pie Recipe - it can also be searched as recipe # 154590 - the original recipezaar number.

Note that it says Fish and Spinach Casserole .

My adaptation is as follows (alterations in red):

2 lbs hake fillets (see end of recipe directions for substitutions) (we use 3 1/2 lbs of bluefish)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 (8 ounce) bag fresh spinach -3 bags
  • 1 (4 ounce) package cheddar cheese, shredded 2 packages
  • 1/4 cup egg substitute (Egg Beaters) original was 2 eggs, we use 4 eggs
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped 1 large onion
  • 1/2 cup celery, finely chopped use 1 cup
  • 2 medium potatoes, cooked and mashed 4-5 potatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper to taste and a bit of salt

  • Directions:

    1. Preheat the oven to 350°.
    2. In a large skillet saute together the fish filets, onion, celery and black pepper in the oil for approximately 10 min; set aside to cool slightly. I poach the fish until just done in water with parsley flakes, and sauté the veggies separately.
    3. Cook the spinach in a little water until limp; drain, squeezing out as much water as you can and set aside to cool.
    4. In a bowl combine the potatoes, the fish filet mixture and the egg substitute.
    5. Butter a 2 quart casserole dish and then begin assembling the casserole.
    6. First a layer of fish mixture, then a layer of spinach; then sprinkle with half of the cheddar cheese.
    7. Next, a layer of the remaining fish mixture, then the remaining spinach, then the remaining cheddar cheese.
    8. Bake in the preheated 350°F oven for 25-30 minutes. more like 40 min.
    9. Variation: if you don't recognize the fish 'hake' -- you may substitute cod, flounder, haddock, pollock or tilapia in it's place.
    10. Variation: you can also swap out the cheddar cheese for another type such as mozzarella or monerey jack.
    I hope you'll enjoy your pie as much as we do. Note that is a crustless pie, often called a fisherman's pie in the UK, just as shepherd's pie is a crustless pie.
    I warn you, it takes longer to put together than you think, but you'll like it, and maybe we can bring bluefish back to the table!

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