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Fish pie

Updated Thursday, 28th June 2007

Try out our recipe from the Ever Wondered About Food series

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fish pie and green beans Copyrighted  image Icon Copyright: BBC

Serves 6–8



  • 2 chunky fillets of natural dyed smoked haddock – skinned, boned and cut into large chunks
  • 8 large fillets of Dover sole cut into large bite-sized chunks
  • 1.2 litres (1¾ pt) whole milk
  • 1 kg (2 lb) mussels in shells or 250g (9 oz) mussels out of their shells
  • 20 ml (1½ fl oz) white wine
  • 2 generous handfuls of already cooked prawns – (ideally, Norwegian ones cooked in brine)
  • 100 g (3½ oz or a handful) of frozen peas
  • 100 g (3½ oz or a handful) of sliced, small button mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley


  • 130 g (4½ oz) butter
  • 120 g (4 oz) plain flour
  • Fish milk reserved from poaching.

Cheesy mash

  • 900 g (2 lb) potatoes, boiled and mashed
  • 50 ml (2 fl oz) fish milk reserved from poaching
  • 50 g (2 oz) grated cheddar cheese
  • 25 g (1 oz) butter

To serve

  • Green beans



  1. Place the haddock and Dover sole in a wide bottomed pan.
  2. Add the whole milk and bring to a simmer.
  3. Carefully remove the cooked fish and set aside for later. Reserve 50ml of the milk for the cheesy mash and the rest for the sauce.
  4. Before cooking, remove and throw away any mussels which are open.
  5. Steam the mussels by throwing them into a hot pan and add a splash of white wine. Cover the pan and cook for 1 minute. Strain using a colander. 
  6. Throw away any mussels which are still closed. Pick the mussels from their shells and add to the cooked fish.

The sauce

  1. Melt the butter in a pan. Stir in the flour and cook for about 2 minutes without colouring.
  2. Gradually add the milk in stages, stirring constantly between each addition.
  3. Keep stirring to make a smooth sauce – you want to achieve a thick, double cream consistency.
  4. Simmer for about 10 minutes.

Cheesy mash

        Add the reserved fish milk, cheese and butter to the boiled and mashed potatoes.

To make the pie

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6.
  2. Place the fish and mussels in an oven-proof pie dish (14” x 10”) off the heat.
  3. Pour on the sauce so that it covers the fish.
  4. Add the prawns, mussels, peas, mushrooms and parsley.
  5. Season the mixture and stir well, taking care not to over mix and break up the fish.
  6. Carefully cover the fish filling with the mash, and season it if necessary.
  7. Dot the butter over the mash for a crispy topping.
  8. Bake in the hot oven for 20 minutes until hot. 

To Serve

Serve straight away with green beans.

Did you know?

One cow will generously give us almost 200,000 glasses of milk in her lifetime.





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