WILDFIT Mariner’s Pie

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This is a very simple recipe that makes a tasty breakfast, dinner, or anytime meal when you feel like comfort food! I love to prep it in advance and slide it in the oven half an hour before mealtime. Enjoy!

Season: Spring

Challenge Weeks: 1-13

Prep Time: 15 Minutes

Cook Time: 25 Minutes

Serves: 2-4 People

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cauliflower, chopped into florets
  • ¼ cup slivered almond 
  • 2 Tablespoons ground flax
  • 2 packed cups of baby spinach
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless white fish, cut in chunks
  • ½ cup (100 g) of coconut milk
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • A small handful of dill, minced (about 2 Tablespoons)
  • A small handful of tarragon, minced  (about 2 Tablespoons)

Preparation:

The most challenging part of this recipe is making a cauliflower mash which doesn’t soggy- so this is the part which deserves all of your attention! In a steamer pot, add an inch of water and place the cauliflower florets in the basket above and cover with a lid. Bring the pot of water to a boil, then steam the florets for 7 minutes until soft. Drain and set aside to cool.

To make the mash, add the steamed cauliflower and ½ teaspoon of salt to your food processor and puree until it is smooth. If you don’t have a food processor a potato masher will do the trick! At this point, you may want to scoop it all out into a fine-meshed sieve or nut milk bag and press or squeeze to remove some of the moisture in the mash. The salt will pull water out of the cauliflower, so it is a good idea to do this step first and give the chemistry a few minutes to work its magic. This will make a lighter, fluffier topping on the casserole, however, the step isn’t necessary if you are in a hurry. 

Next preheat your oven to 450℉ and grease your 2 ½ quart casserole dish with olive oil and set aside. This size of dish will feed two to four people, depending on if you are serving a side salad and how hungry those people are.

The spinach adds flavour, colour and texture, and can be substituted for another leafy green if preferred. You will need to take some of the water out of it though, or the pie will be soggy. This is done by pouring hot water over the greens to wilt them, then squeezing out the liquid. This also helps deactivate the antinutrients in the leaves.To do this boil 500 mL of water while setting the spinach in a colander over a dish. Pour boiling water evening over spinach several times, allowing it to wilt. Press water out with a spoon, draining the water into the bowl below. You may choose to keep the water for your Alkagizer or discard it into your house plants.

Next add the spinach as an even first layer of your casserole dish and top with the two cracked eggs, one at each end of the pan. These eggs will fluff up as they bake, binding the layers and adding a richness to the dish.

The sauce comes together easily in a small measuring cup. Mince the herbs and garlic up into small pieces. These will create the main flavours of the dish and are so lovely with the fish. If you are not draining your cauliflower, it is best to substitute a couple teaspoons of each dried herb in place of fresh. Combine the coconut milk with the herbs, lemon juice, garlic, ½ tsp salt and pepper, then set aside for the flavours to meld together.

Your white fish can be whatever you have available to you, as long as it is fresh. I used haddock. Cut your fish filets up into evenly sized chunks and lay them evenly over the eggs. Remember the fish will shrink as it bakes, so it is okay if it overlaps a bit. 

Now we return to the cauliflower. Once drained, pour it back into the bowl of the food processor or any stainless steel bowl and combine with the ground flaxseed, slivered almonds, and oil. Pulse the processor or stir the mixture to combine it well. The flax gives the mash some density, will help it crisp up and the almonds lend a sweet flavor and a bit of crunch.

Finally pour the coconut milk sauce over the fish, then top with the cauliflower mash mixture, smoothing to cover the top of the casserole.

Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and serve hot. Enjoy!

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