This is the recipe for my extra easy fish pie, it's nothing posh, just fish, cheese sauce, mashed potato and some vegetables, clean plates are guaranteed! I have included my recipe for cheese sauce, although you could use a packet mix if you prefer (be wary of hidden salt in those little devils though) The following amounts are enough for 4 very generous servings! This may seem like a very long winded recipe, but once you have the hang of it, it is very simple and filling - I have put as much detail as possible into it for you all For the pie you will need: * 400g fish (cod,salmon, trout, etc. best mixed) * 700 g Potatotes * 150 g frozen peas (you can also use other veg ie carrots, sweetcorn) * 60 g butter * 80 g grated cheese (any will do) * milk * salt and pepper to taste * a bit of vegetable oil For the cheese sauce you will need: * 75g Cheese (I tend to use whatever is lurking in the fridge) * 1 pint milk * 40g plain flour * 40g unsalted butter * salt and pepper to taste Makes approx 1 pint (which is what I use for my fish pie) I usually make this up the night before when I get a spare 10 minutes to myself, it chills well - no need to reheat if you have premade it, just throw it in, the heat of the oven will warm it through nicely. To make your cheese sauce - * place the milk, flour and butter into a medium saucepan and place it over a gentle heat, using a balloon whisk, begin to whisk while bringing it to a gentle simmer. * Whisk continually until you have a smooth, glossy sauce, and simmer very gently for 5 minutes. * add your cheese(s) and whisk again, allowing them to melt. * Season with some freshly milled pepper and salt to taste if you like * chill in the fridge overnight if pre-making in a sealed container, place a layer of cling film over the surface of the sauce to prevent a skin from forming. To make your fish pie - * Preheat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade (350 Fahrenheit, Gas Mark 4). * Use an ovenproof dish, grease the bottom of the dish with the vegetable oil - this will keep the fish from sticking (less scrubbing ) * Place the fish pieces with the skin side down into the dish, salt and pepper lightly and pour a bit of milk over the fish so it's about half covered. * Peel the potatoes, and chop into even chunks, either place them in a pain to boil, or into your steamer (steaming will keep in more of those lovely vitamins and nutrients). * Put the frozen peas into a saucepan and cover them with water. Add a pinch of salt and put them on the hob - low heat will do. You don't want to boil the peas (this will make them come out of their skins and turn them into mushy peas ...) * Place your fish into the oven and set your timer for 20 minutes (time for a glass of wine and a sit down) Keep an eye on your peas though - when they have come close to boiling point, take them off the hob and drain them. Put them to the side. * When the 20 minutes are up, drain the potatoes (the pan if you've steamed) and let them sit in the saucepan without a lid - we want the rest of the water to evaporate. * Take the fish out of the oven and drain off the milk. Keep the drained off milk as we will use it later to make the potato mash (If you're using a packet mix cheese sauce, adding this milk to it will give it a nice flavour). * Now turn up the heat of the oven to 220 degrees centigrade (425 Fahrenheit, Gas Mark 7) * Remove any bits of milk skin from the dish, Using two forks, separate the fish into small bits pulling the bits off the skin, remove the skin from the dish. It will come off easily as we greased the dish earlier ...and distribute the fish evenly over the bottom of the dish. * Mash the potatoes like you've never mashed before with the butter and a little milk from the fish! This is the important bit - we want the mashed potatoes to be very smooth and creamy - and that involves muscle power! If like me you are lazy, you can invest in the handiest kitchen gadget I have ever bought, a potato ricer - this takes the hassle out of this step. Don't add any more milk if you haven't mashed at least for a minute - if the mash is too thick and crumbly, add some more milk and mash again. Please be careful not to make the mash too liquid as we want it to be just creamy enough to incorporate your peas into. * Now we add the peas to the mash - think of it like folding flour into a cake... gently does it. * Pour your cheese sauce over the fish (whether it is hot or cold it doesn't matter, the 20 minutes in the oven will warm through any chilled sauce, and then spoon the mash on top * Spread your cheese on top of your pie and place in the oven for 20 minutes. This will give you enough time to prepare some extra vegetables to go with your pie, particular favorites in our house are carrots, swede and broccoli. I usually wash most of my pots and pans at this stage too, maybe I am just a sadist for washing up twice * Once your 20 minutes are up, enjoy! Other variants of this pie include using parsley sauce, grilling the mash and omitting the cheese on top, and my brothers special.... use boil in the bag fish in sauce and top with smash and peas (he should go on master chef shouldn't he? ) Incidently I am making this tonight so I will pop back with some pictures of the finished product later.