Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Fish Pie

It's amazing how late in the day this recipe has made its way into this blog. Amazing because this is one pie I make ever so often and one I can make with my eyes closed! I got the original recipe from my mom, but over the years have modified it such that each time I make it, it's a little different...but I'll try to give a standardized recipe here, to make it easy for you to make it.

The original recipe requires it to be made with fresh fish (mostly with Mackerel, see this to get a clearer picture-in Malayalam  it's called "Ayla"). But I just substitute it with tinned fish, mostly tuna. I'm going to give the recipe as it is with fresh fish, so if you're like me and not inclined to go through the whole process of boiling and deboning the fish, then just skip those steps and use a can of tuna instead!

This recipe is a firm family favorite for dinner (when I was with my parents and also now that I'm a parent myself!). I've also made it for friends and have always got rave reviews....but try it out and see for yourself!

For the benefit of some friends who insist I mention the brands of certain products I use, under the mistaken notion that I'm an expert and anything tried and tested by me must be good (!), from now on I will be providing a list of such brands under the tips section. Please note that nobody is, as of now, paying me to endorse any product-but if by chance the CFO of any of the companies mentioned happen to read my blog, please, please contact me...we can work out a deal :-)

To serve 4
  1. 4 fresh Mackerel, cleaned or substitute with 1 can of tuna
  2. 4 medium onions, minced finely
  3. 2 tablespoons ginger-garlic paste
  4. 2 green chillies, chopped finely
  5. 2 tomatoes, chopped finely
  6. 2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
  7. A pinch of turmeric powder
  8. 1 teaspoon chilli powder
  9. 4 slices of white bread
  10. 2 tablespoons butter
  11. 2 tablespoons oil
  12. Half to one cup of milk
  13. 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  14. 1 to 2 tomatoes, sliced into thin roundels
  15. Cheese grated or cheese slices, to cover the dish
  • If using fresh fish, boil water in a pan and add the fish to it with a little salt and turmeric.
  • When it is cooked, drain the water, wait for the fish to cool and carefully remove all the bones from the fish. Scramble up the fish into flakes and keep aside (if using tinned fish, all you have to do is open the tin and keep aside....your call!!!)
  • Spread the butter on the bread slices, pour the milk over it, and mash both together to make a smooth paste. Keep aside (If you want this to be low on calories, skip the butter. But want it high on taste? Obviously, bring on the butter brigade!)
  • In a deep skillet, heat the oil and add the onions. Fry till translucent.
  • Now throw in the green chillies and ginger-garlic paste. Fry for 1 to 2 minutes, making sure the paste does not stick to the pan.
  • Now add in the tomato pieces and fry till they get pulped.
  • Then add the turmeric powder and chilli powder and fry till the raw smell is gone.
  • Now tip in the tomato ketchup and the fish flakes. Stir well to combine, for about 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • To this, add the bread-milk mixture and combine everything really well.
  • Preheat oven to 180 C.
  • Transfer this to a baking dish, sprinkle bread crumbs on top, arrange tomato slices on it, and grate the cheese on top or arrange cheese slices on top of the tomato slices.
  • Bake at 180 C for 30 minutes or more until the top gets bubbly and brown.
Since this already has bread incorporated into it, it's great to have with just a green leafy citrusy salad on the side. Or you could still pair it with some hot garlic bread!

According to my mood, at different times I've also added fresh herbs (like coriander leaves) or dried herbs (like oregano or thyme) or a dash of pepper and even a dash of soya sauce for a different taste.
I once added iceberg lettuce leaves along with the onions-it definitely upped the taste and nutrition quotient!

Tinned Fish: American Garden
Ginger-Garlic paste: Mother's Recipe
Cheese: Britannia


Katerina said...

I like the fact that it can be done both ways. You save a lot of time with canned fish. It is easier to make it during weekdays. Very good choice.

Biny Anoop said...

wow i love dat.....listen for the bruschetta my oven was set at 180deg cel...i just kept it till the cheese melted...hope dat helps......ur fish pie looks colourful....i love fish pie with chips...keep it up

Karishma said...

@Katerina...thanks once again!
@Biny...thanks for letting me know the oven temp...I'll be trying that out for breakfast soon...

Anonymous said...

One can of Tuna (sea sparkle)was waitg for me in my kitchen cabinet since some time ..it was tranformed in to Fish pie yday ..YUM!!!!I followed the same recipe.;It was really easy .Thank You !!

Shu Han said...

I like your indian twist on a fish pie! haha so creative!
I did shepherd's pie with masala mince instead too. I love the addition of spice!

Shail Mohan said...

This, I gotta make!