Noth­ing bet­ter than fresh

Hawke's Bay Today - - Front Page -

IT WAS 14 years ago Chris­tian Kasper made what he de­scribes as the best de­ci­sion of his life . . . he moved to Dunedin.

“It has the hus­tle and bus­tle of any ma­jor city in the world but also the ro­man­tic vibe of a small town in South­ern France.”

Kasper loves Dunedin al­most as much as he loves food. “I’ve al­ways been a foodie,” he says, point­ing to a photo of a rather chubby kid as proof.

De­li­cious Dunedin is the brain­child of Kasper and two other mates.

“It all started with an idea to cre­ate a cook­book about the city,” he says. “It’s restau­rants, cafes, and peo­ple.”

The book is a hard one to put down. If you are plan­ning on skip­ping through it over a cuppa, do un­der­stand you will be en­grossed for hours . . . and hours.

The Plato restau­rant fea­tures in De­li­cious Dunedin. Nigel Broad says of the restau­rant: “We’ve been here for so long and I guess we’ve re­ally be­come part of the Dunedin food scene. We’re right by the har­bour and our spe­cial­ity is fresh fish. Ev­ery­thing is lo­cally sourced and now we make our own beer too.”

Fol­low­ing is a Plato recipe:

Plato Fish Pie

There’s noth­ing bet­ter than fresh fish and a pie — we’ve com­bined the two in our plated fish pie, one of the most pop­u­lar items on our menu.

— Nigel Broad

Prep: 40 min­utes | Cook: 30 min­utes | Serves 4 gen­er­ously | Skill level: Medium



500g Agria (or sim­i­lar) po­ta­toes, peeled

75g but­ter

70ml cream

1 tsp whole­grain mus­tard (op­tional)

Salt and pep­per Veloute´ sauce:

6 Tbsp but­ter

150g ba­con, chopped

1⁄ leek (whites and/or greens), 2 finely sliced

2 tsp whole­grain mus­tard

6 Tbsp flour

4 cups veg­etable or fish stock, hot salt and pep­per

To as­sem­ble: 700-800g white fish fil­lets (any white fish, in­clud­ing cheaper cuts such as hoki, ele­phant fish, and ling)

250g frozen peas

200g smoked fish, bro­ken into pieces

200g smoked cheese or ched­dar, grated (op­tional) salt and pep­per

But­ter or oil for greas­ing To serve: lemon wedges green salad fresh bread


Mash: Boil the po­ta­toes in salted wa­ter un­til ten­der. Drain, place back in the pot with the but­ter, cream and mus­tard, and mash un­til smooth. Sea­son with salt and pep­per to taste. Set aside un­til needed.

Veloute´ sauce: Melt the but­ter in a saucepan on a low heat. Add the ba­con, leek and mus­tard and cook for about 10 min­utes un­til the leeks and ba­con are soft but not coloured or crisp. Add the flour and cook, stir­ring con­tin­u­ously for around 3 min­utes so no lumps re­main and the flour has cooked.

Add a splash of stock and stir well to com­bine, scrap­ing any solids from the pan. Grad­u­ally stir in the re­main­ing stock in parts, then sim­mer gen­tly for 15 min­utes, stir­ring oc­ca­sion­ally, un­til the sauce is smooth and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Sea­son with salt and pep­per to taste.

To as­sem­ble: Pre­heat the oven to 180C and grease one large or four in­di­vid­ual oven­proof dishes or skil­lets. Place the whole fish fil­lets in the pre­pared dish (di­vide evenly if us­ing in­di­vid­ual dishes) and bake for 2-3 min­utes.

Re­move from the oven and top the fish with the peas and smoked fish. Cover with the veloute´ sauce then a layer of cheese. Spoon the mash on top.

Bake for around 20 min­utes un­til the sauce is bub­bling and start­ing to caramelise at the edge of the pan.

Serve the fish pie hot with lemon wedges and salad on the side, and some bread to mop up the sauce.

Nigel Broad from Plato.

De­li­cious Dunedin, by Chris­tian Kasper and Kelly Lind­say, Cur­ry­wurst Me­dia, $50.

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