Hopley's Secret Recipe revealed!
7th April 2011
... Comments


I’m not a huge fan of complicated dishes. I’m not saying the easier the better and let’s not get any more complex than cheese on toast, but great dishes don’t have to be hard to make. And they sure don’t have to have an ingredients list longer than the credits list on Emmerdale.

What I do say though, is quality counts. Good fish, spuds, cheese…even butter all go into making this good fish dish a great fish dish.



Fish Pie


Serves one

  • Ingredients:

4oz quality fish pieces – salmon, smoked & unsmoked haddock, cod – from your local fishmonger (alternatively a quality frozen fish pie mix from anywhere you care to get it);

2 tsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed;

2 large potatoes (a good floury spud that’s ideal for mashing, the best varieties are Wilja, Saxon, Nadine & Rooster).

handful grated Quality Cheddar.

1 knob Butter

Salt & Pepper

Milk / Cream optional

  • What you’ll need to cook this:

A hob; a grill & a microwave oven;

A potato masher

A fork

A pan with a lid and an ovenproof dish that’ll hold enough for one person.


  • Right, let’s start with the mash.


Get your spuds nicely peeled and slice them into quarters.


Rinse the potatoes off to get rid of some of that starch and put them in a pan of cold, slightly salted water, put the lid on and heat.

Potatoes take a while to get to the boil. Let them boil for a few minutes then get a fork and prod them. Repeat every five or so minutes until the fork slides through the spud, now they’re ready for mashing.

Take off the heat, remove the lid and drain them.

Put the potatoes back into the pan, and add the knob of butter, letting it just melt a little. If you want, you can add a little cream or milk to make the mash that bit creamier. But you’ve got butter in there anyway, so it’s up to you.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

  • Now the fun bit.

Mash away. Make it as creamy or as lumpy as you like.
When the potatoes are mashed to your required consistency, just set it to one side.

  • Now for the fishy bit.

Grab your ovenproof dish – one that’s unlikely to melt -- and arrange the fish on the bottom but leaving an oval space in the middle.

Pour the lemon juice into this space.

Gently sprinkle the grated cheddar over the fish, keeping the oval space free.

Then get your mash and dollop over the fish and cheese. Level the mash out and then re-make the hole.
(The hole is important as without it the mash is likely to explode all over the inside of your microwave oven!)

Place the dish in the microwave and cook on full power for 3 minutes (ours is 1000w and the timing reflects that -- for other microwaves add or subtract time accordingly).

Take the fish pie out and prod with a fork to make sure the fish is piping hot, then place it under a pre-heated grill and heat until the top of the mash goes brown and crispy.

And there you go; a very lovely fish pie that you don’t have to share with anyone else.




This recipe and many others can be enjoyed without you actually doing any cooking by visiting Hopley House Tuesday thru to Sunday.

01270 526 292

"...The food in the Tea Room is fantastic. The best Fish Pie I have ever tasted. Superb desserts, outstanding friendly and efficient service..."

Actual Testimonial from Judith E.




About the Author

Graham R

Member since: 7th April 2011

when not working I write, paint, draw, listen to music and just chill. but that's when I'm not working, and that ain't often

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