Cooking fans sing praises of Mary Berry’s fish pie with soufflé topping

Mary Berry makes fish pie with a soufflé topping

As one of Britain’s favourite winter warmers, many households will agree that fish pie is the culinary equivalent of a cosy blanket.

Not only is the bake steeped in cultural significance, but it also marries two of the country’s favourite foods; fish and mashed potatoes.

Naturally, an abundance of seafood around the UK’s coastal areas has contributed to the popularity of the dish. The winter warmer has also proven wildly adaptable, however, inciting cooks like Mary Berry to explore different toppings.

One of Mary’s favourite versions combines flaky fish with a buttery soufflé topping, which has left her online fans highly impressed.

In the comments of a YouTube clip showing the cook preparing the dish, several viewers confirmed that the “fancy” was “not too hard to follow”. Here’s the recipe.

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50 grams of butter, plus extra for greasing

One leek, thinly sliced or chopped

50 grams of flour

600 ml hot milk

Two tbsp chopped fresh dill

Two tbsp lemon juice

350 grams fresh haddock, skinned and cut into evenly sized cubes

350 grams undyed smoked haddock, skinned and cut into evenly sized cubes

Three hard-boiled eggs, each cut into four or eight wedges. 

For the soufflé topping:

One small loaf of white bread (about two to three days old)

59 grams full-fat cream cheese

75 grams butter

75 grams mature cheddar grated

One free-range egg white

Salt and freshly ground black pepper.


Grease a 1.5 litre / 2 ½ pin shallow wide-based ovenproof dish with butter. To make the fish pie, melt the butter in a saucepan, add the leeks and gently soften over low heat until completely tender but not coloured.

Sprinkle in the flour and stir over high heat for a minute. Gradually pour in the hot milk, stirring all the time until the sauce is smooth, and thick and has come to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the chopped dill, lemon juice, fish and season with salt and pepper. Cook for two minutes, stirring. Remove from the heat.

Spoon into the shallow wide-based ovenproof dish. Arrange the eggs on the top of the sauce and press in gently. Level the top and set aside until cold. Cover with cling film and chill in the fridge for about an hour or until firm.


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Preheat the oven to 200C / 180C Fan/Gas Six. In the meantime, start preparing the soufflé topping by removing the crusts from the loaf and discarding them. Cut the remaining loaf into five slices then cut each slice into small cubes. You will need 150g of bread cubes.

Add the cream cheese, butter and cheddar to a saucepan, and melt over low heat until runny (the mixture may look crudled but do not worry). Set aside for a moment.

In a bowl, whisk the egg white until stiff peaks form when the whisk is removed. Fold the egg whites into the cheese mixture. Season with salt and pepper and carefully stir. Stir in the bread cubes so they are all coated in the mixture. Spoon onto the top of the chilled fish mixture so the cubes are in a single layer.  

Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes until golden brown and bubbling. If it is getting too brown cover it with foil and continue to bake. Leave to stand for five minutes then serve with salad or green vegetables.

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