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Fish au Gratin (Fiskgratäng)

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Fish au Gratin (Fiskgratäng)

Fish au Gratin

photo ©K. Diehl, licensed to About.com
A subtle and sophisticated fish casserole frequently served as a hot dish on Swedish dinner and smörgåsbord tables. Homemade fish stock adds a special depth of flavor to this entrée.

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups prepared mashed potatoes
  • 1 1/2 pounds white fish fillets (flounder, cod, halibut, pike, sole)
  • salt
  • white pepper
  • juice from 1/2 lemon (3 Tbsp.)
  • 4 Tbsp. butter
  • 3 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 cup fish stock
  • 1 cup half-and-half or light cream
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped fresh dill (or 2 Tbsp. dried dill)
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon zest
  • 2 Tbsp. grated Jarlsberg or other Scandinavian white cheese (or substitute Parmesan)
  • 1 cup cooked and peeled shrimp, for garnish

Preparation:

Prepare mashed potatoes.

Preheat oven to 425º. Season fish fillets with salt and white pepper, then place in a buttered casserole or gratin dish. Sprinkle with lemon juice and dot with 1 Tbsp. butter. Bake in oven for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour to make a smooth, light yellow roux, but do not allow roux to brown. As soon as roux is well-blended, gradually whisk in fish stock and then half-and-half to make a cream sauce. Add dill, lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes.

Remove fish from oven and increase heat to 475º. Spoon or pipe mashed potatoes around the edges of the casserole dish, framing the fish. Pour the sauce on top of the fish within the mashed potato “frame.” Sprinkle with grated cheese, then return to oven and bake until lightly browned (10-15 minutes, depending upon the heat of your oven).

Garnish with shrimp and chopped dill before serving.

Yield: 5-6 servings.

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