December 2010 Trawlermans Bake
4x medium cod fillet
2x medium smoked haddock fillets
200g cooked peeled prawns
1kg peeled chopped potato for mashing
300ml double cream
1x medium onion finely diced
100g plain flour
100g strong Cheddar cheese
Enough breadcrumbs to lightly cover
Salt and pepper to taste
Put your potatoes on to cook in one pan while in another put your fish with just enough water to cover. Slowly bring this to a slow simmer; the fish should come apart quite easily when it's cooked. Don't over do it!
Drain off the fish but keep the cooking stock. Put the fish into a deep ovenproof dish and break it up a little. Add the prawns.
In the pan you just used for the fish gently fry the onion in half the butter. Add the flour and cook for a further minute you should end up with a smooth paste. Slowly add the fish stock until you end up with quite a thick sauce, it'll just drip off the spoon. Pour in the cream and cook gently until the mixture has a consistency that coats the back of the spoon. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour this all over the fish and give a stir to ensure all the fish is coated.
By now your potatoes should be cooked. You can check this by making sure that they fall off a sharp knife. Drain them and mash with the remaining butter. Add salt and pepper to taste. Carefully spread over the fish mixture.
Mix the cheese with an equal amount of breadcrumb and put into a preheated oven at 180°c. bake until crisp and golden brown.
This is a good old hearty dish that's good at any time of the year, use whatever fish you like. I use in the main part a flaky white fish like cod or Pollock with a bit of smoked haddock for a rich flavour and then some prawns for a bit of texture. For a real treat try adding a little bit of smoked salmon. For portion sizes go for 3 different fish and allow half of each fillet per person. The following should feed six.