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    Ham & haddie

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    Ham & haddie

    by Diana Henry

    • Preparation time: 20 minutes
    • Cooking time: 30 minutes
    • Total time: 50 minutes

    Serves: 4


    450g waxy potatoes (such as Charlotte or La Ratte)
    35g butter, plus extra for greasing
    1 onion, finely chopped
    2 1/2 tbsp plain flour
    200ml fish stock
    250ml double cream
    ½ x 25g pack flat leaf parsley, finely chopped (about 2 tbsp)
    Squeeze of lemon juice, to taste
    35g extra mature Cheddar, grated
    350g smoked haddock fillets, skinned and cut into chunks
    25g ham, torn into pieces
    Green winter vegetables (Savoy cabbage, broccoli or other), to serve (optional)


    Cut the potatoes (no need to peel them) into slices about 0.5cm thick. Put them into a saucepan and add boiling water. Once the water comes back to the boil, cook the potatoes for 2 minutes. Drain.

    2. Preheat the oven to 220ºC, gas mark 7. Melt the butter and sauté the onion for about 7 minutes, until soft but not coloured. Add the flour, stirring it around in the onions until the mixture is straw coloured. Remove the pan from the heat and slowly add the fish stock, a little at a time, stirring it into the onions. The mixture needs to stay smooth. Gradually add more stock and stir to incorporate until it’s all used up, then add the cream.

    3. Put the pan back on the heat and bring the mixture to the boil, stirring continuously so it thickens. Turn the heat down and cook for another 4 minutes to cook the flour. Take the pan off the heat. Check for seasoning and add the parsley and lemon juice to taste.

    4. In a buttered gratin dish, arrange ½ the potatoes in the bottom, then season and pour over 1/ 3 of the sauce, followed by ½ the cheese. Put the haddock and ham on top, add another 1/ 3 of the sauce, then add the rest of the potatoes, season, then add the rest of the sauce. Don’t worry if it looks as if you don’t have enough sauce, the top doesn’t have to be completely covered.

    5. Scatter with the rest of the cheese and bake for 30 minutes, until golden and bubbling. Serve with green winter vegetables, if liked.

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