I love this dish. Lately I have been trying to add fish to our family meals more often. I’m a meat lover and I would eat meat everyday if I could. However, I am trying to make our family dinners more diverse. This dish is perfect for Lent if you are going meatless on Fridays in the leadup to Easter. However, this can be eaten anytime of the year.
Recipe: (Adapted from a Rick Stein recipe)
- 1 small onion, thickly sliced
- 1 bay leaf
- 600ml milk
- 300ml thickened cream
- 100g peas
- 60g baby spinach
- 180g smoked cod
- 4 eggs, boiled and quartered
- 70g butter
- 45g plain flour
- 1kg potatoes
- 1 egg yolk
- salt and white pepper to season
- Pre-heat the oven to 180degC
- In a large pan, add the onions, bay leaf, 450ml of the milk, cream and smoked cod. Bring to the boil and gently simmer for 8 minutes.
- Lift the fish out onto a plate and strain the cooking liquor into a jug.
- When the fish has cooled, break into large flakes and spread out evenly over the base of a shallow ovenproof dish.
- Over the fish, evenly arrange the boiled egg, peas and baby spinach. (It will look like there’s too much baby spinach but it will wilt down)
- Melt 35g of the butter into a pan, add the flour and cook for 1 miniute. Take off the heat and gradually add the cooking liquor. Return to the heat and slowly bring to the boil. Keep stirring. Simmer for 10 minutes and season.
- Pour the sauce over the fish.
- Boil the potatoes for 15-20 minutes. Drain and mash and add some butter and the egg yolk. Season with salt and white pepper and add enough milk to form a spreadable mash.
- Spoon the mash over the filling and mark the surface with a fork.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown
I’ve mentioned many times in past posts that my parents used to cook and sell Filipino food to the local Filipino community when I was a young girl. Back then I didn’t appreciate the importance of my Filipino heritage and how important it was for my parents to keep it alive in our family.
Now that I am older and have my own family, I realise how important it is to teach my children not only their Filipino roots but also their English background, which they inherited from their dad.
I plan to do this one day at a time, one dish at a time.
Tinapa has been something I’ve been wanting to learn and make for years. We finally decided to make some during our “mum (and dad) and daughter cooking day”. As soon as the sardines touched the smoker, the instant hit of the the aroma brought me back to my childhood.
You can smoke any kind of fish though the oily ones are the best for this. We used sardines. Makes sure they are the freshest you can get your hands on.
Before smoking the sardines, they must be quickly blanched in water with plenty of salt and sugar. Quickly simmer for 5-7 minutes just to slightly cook them through.
If you have the time, it is ideal to left to dry overnight. We didn’t have the time so we smoked it straight away.
We used pine wood chips but you can use any kind of wood chips. You can also add herbs to it.
Smoke the sardines for approximately 15mins till the skin is nice and brown. Turn once. Do this carefully as the sardines are delicate and fall apart easily. You should also be able to smell the smoky aroma of the wood.
In Philippines, this is for breakfast, quickly pan fried, eaten with garlic rice and frankly, it’s the best way to eat them. Yum!