I think it is tied for the best restaurant dish I’ve ever eaten – the Sand Crab Lasagna at Il Centro, Brisbane or the Snapper Pie from Boathouse at Blackwattle Bay in Sydney. Luckily over the years, I’ve managed to track down the recipes for both and can now cook them at home to my heart’s content and adapt the recipes to make them gluten-free.
For both restaurants, the creator of their signature dish has long moved on and try as the new chefs might to bring their own stamp on the menu, it seems it’s those signature dishes that people return for again, and again.
I’ve already blogged about the sand crab lasagna recipe and how to make it gluten free. The snapper pie is quite possibly the best fish pie on the planet. Please do let me know if you find a better one.
At the Boathouse the pie is served with a topping of light as air puff pastry. It is one of those dishes that is so rich but so delicious that you tend to overeat and feel ridiculously full (… or maybe that is just me as it is supposed to shared between two and I have the whole thing to myself). As they serve it in the restaurant with the most divine potato mash, it doubles the damage!
My version eliminates all the butter from the mash and puff pastry and to make it gluten-free, I top with finely sliced potato, tossed in a little macadamia oil (or olive oil if you prefer) and baked until golden. Served with a green salad or steamed green vegies and roasted cherry tomatoes – it is still fabulous and can be eaten with a lot less guilt 🙂
You gotta try this dish – you won’t be disappointed.
Oh and I used mahi mahi fillets instead of snapper – it was tender, flaky and boneless chunks.
500g chunky white fleshed fish (remove bones)
1 tblspn macadamia oil
2 small brown onions
1/2 tsp sea salt
100ml fish stock
2 tsp white truffle oil
2 roasting potatoes
roasted tomatoes and green salad to serve
1. Put tomatoes into the oven (180c) to roast and set aside to warm just before serving.
2. Make the sauce. Firstly, thinly slice 1 of the onions and half of the other one. Cut the remaining half into a fine dice for later and set aside.
3. Place the macadamia oil, the sliced onions into a pan and 1/2 tsp sea salt. Fry gently on medium heat until golden brown. This could take up to half an hour, so be patient. Be careful not to let them burn, so check regularly and stir often.
4. Add the fish stock and boil rapidly until reduced by half. Add the cream and simmer until cream has reduced by half. Allow to cool slightly.
5. Meanwhile, gently fry the reserved diced onions until soft and slightly caramelised (around 10mins).
6. Using a hand blender (Bamix) process the onion cream mix until smooth. Add the cooked diced onions and check sauce for seasoning, you may need a little more salt. It should taste delicious at this point.
7. Peel the potatoes and using a mandolin, slice finely. Drizzle potato with a little macadamia oil and mix through with your hands to distribute the oil. Place the potato in overlapping pattern (scallops) and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake at 200c for 20mins.
8. After the potatoes have been cooking for 20mins, ladle some sauce on the bottom of an ovenproof dish (or individual dishes if you prefer). Place the chunks of white fish on top and cover the fish with the rest of the onion cream sauce. Drizzle with the truffle oil and cover the dish with foil.
8. Bake the fish pie at 200C for 20mins, whilst the potatoes are also cooking. If the potatoes require further cooking remove the fish from the oven, keep warm and covered, until the potatoes are golden and crispy.
9. Serve the ‘pie’, top with potato scallops.
10. Serve with roasted tomatoes and green salad.