There are many different dishes out there that you may not really think about, as there are millions of different foods to try. Chances are that if it is a meal from another country, you may not be too familiar with it.
If you are in the mood to try different foods from around the world, but you are worried about food not agreeing with a sensitive stomach, one of the best places to start might be with the dishes of the United Kingdom. There are many dishes of the United Kingdom that are easy to substitute alternative ingredients into, making it one of the best cuisines to begin trying foods from around the world. If you are someone who adores seafood, one of the foods that you might want to try is the fish pie.
Fish pie is exactly what it sounds like, being a baked dish full of different kinds of fish. While it traditionally contains dairy, there you can easily replace this dairy with an alternative that agrees with your digestive system.
However, if you want to make the most of your dish, you will want to learn about where fish pies came from, how they came to be, and what they traditionally contain. This will help you get a better grasp of what this dish is made from before you begin substituting ingredients. After all, when you know more about where a dish comes from, it will be much easier for you to recreate your own dairy free fish pie.
What Is Fish Pie, and Where Does it Come From?
Fish pie is known under a few different names, ranging from simply “fish pie” to “fisherman’s pie,” however, the premise is still the same. This dish heavily resembles the traditional shepherd’s pie in the sense that it is topped with mashed potatoes. The bulk of the pie is made from white fish (which is often smoked). Common types of fish used include cod, haddock, and halibut.
However, when you get more familiar with different fish flavors and how to make fish pie in the first place, you can begin changing this to include your favorite types of fish. You will simply have to remember to skin and dice the fish so that it is ready to be added to the pie. You should also remember that white fish meats work best and that other fish meats may require a fair bit of work.
From here the dish is baked in an oven inside a deep dish. Interestingly, despite falling under the category of savory pies, it does not use a puff pastry as a crust. This is just one of the aspects that makes this dish unique. In fact, fish pie doesn’t really have a “pie crust” at all, making it one of the most unique savory pies the United Kingdom has to offer.
These pies have been around for a long time, with the tradition of seafood pies allegedly beginning in 1100. Back then, fish pies were eaten to honor the Roman goddess known as Venus. During the 1500s, it became customary to give gifts of fish pies, rooting them into British history as an historically important meal as well as one that was easy for just about anyone to make. Fish pies also become a more common meal during Lent, when meats (with the exception of fish) are prohibited. As people worked to find recipes to use during this time, they found that fish pie worked well, further cementing its place in history as a versatile food. If you want to get a taste of British cuisine, there is no better place to start than with the fish pie.
What Ingredients Does Fish Pie Traditionally Use?
In order to properly recreate a fish pie with dairy-free alternatives, it is important for you to have a good understanding of what a traditional fish pie will include in its ingredients. This will help you get a good idea of what you may need to find replacements for and whether or not you will need to add ingredients to make up for any lost properties of the replaced ingredients.
Besides the fish, the dish generally includes a large helping of mashed potatoes for the topping, a decent amount of milk, butter, flour, and onions for flavor and texture, mustard for flavor, chives for flavor, along with sweet corn, peas, and shredded cheddar cheese. The “filling” of the pie is generally made up of fish and vegetables with some milk and a small amount of butter. The topping of the pie is the potatoes. To make a good topping, you will want to mash the potatoes and butter them heavily to create a truly savory topping.
If you are someone who has trouble with dairy, you might be concerned about the amount of milk that is included in fish pie. Thankfully, finding replacements for the milk as well as the cheese is generally an easy task. Before you know it, you will have your own version of fish pie to try.
Replacing Ingredients with Dairy Free Alternatives
You may not realize it, but replacing the milk in the fish pie is actually extremely easy and doesn’t require a lot of work to fix. In fact, it is just as simple as using a different carton of milk that doesn’t have any dairy in it, as you won’t need to make any other changes to the meal to make up for the difference. Most commonly, people find that using coconut milk produces the best flavor and texture in fish pies, making it one of the best alternative ingredients in a fish pie.
If you want to add cheese to your pie, this may be a little bit more difficult, as it can be tough to find quality dairy-free cheese. If you know of a brand that makes good dairy-free cheese, there’s a good chance that you will be able to use that. With that being said, you will want to keep an eye on how dairy-free cheese melts and behaves in the oven so you can work around these differences to create your dairy-free pie. Aside from this, fish pie is thankfully a dish that doesn’t require a lot of work to replace its ingredients.
Some Unique Twists on Fish Pie Recipes
You may not realize it, but there are actually quite a few twists you can pull on fish pie to make it a unique dish for any family gathering. For example, if you want to make your dish stand out amongst a crowd, you could consider replacing the typical potatoes with purple and orange sweet potatoes for a flashy surprise. Rather than a dull mashed potato topping, you will be left with brightly colored orange and purple mashed potatoes that you can surprise your family with.
You can also consider using different seasonings to add a pop of flavor to your dish. Many people prefer using mustard to give the right amount of flavor to their dish, but you can also consider using parsley as well as salt and pepper. You may even find some seasoning salts to use to really add a unique spin onto your brand new fish pie recipe. Before you know it, your recipe will be one that you will be proud to share with friends and family alike.