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Plokkfiskur (Icelandic Fish Stew)

While Americans might define this as a casserole, they certainly won't argue about it's status as a comfort food. Creamy, salty, and cheesy, this heart-warming dish makes for a delicious, simple meal, ready in under an hour.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Icelandic
Servings 6 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound potatoes peeled and diced
  • 2 small yellow onions diced
  • 1 clove garlic diced
  • 1 pound white fish filets cod, haddock, or pollock
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour can substitute gluten-free flour
  • 1 cup whole milk can substitute fish broth
  • ½ teaspoon salt plus 2 tablespoons for cooking fish
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard optional
  • White pepper to taste
  • 1 cup shredded Havarti cheese

Instructions
 

  • Place fish in saucepan over medium heat and cover with water. Add 2 tablespoons of salt and bring to a boil. Cook for about 10 minutes, until the fish is flaky. Drain and set aside. If making your dish dairy-free, reserve 1 cup of this broth for later use.
  • In a large pot, cover diced potatoes with water and bring to a boil. Cook until they are fork-tender, about 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.
  • Melt butter in a saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and saute until translucent, before mixing in garlic.
  • Add flour and cook until the mixture bubbles.
  • Slowly stir in milk and mustard before adding the white fish. Break apart the fish as you stir it into the mixture.
  • Stir in potatoes until the mixture is roughly homogenous. Season to taste with white pepper. You can transfer to bowls and serve it now, or continue for au gratin treatment.
  • Transfer to heatproof baking dish (8”x8” or 7”x10”) and sprinkle with shredded cheese. Place under the broiler set to high heat for 2 minutes, or until the cheese starts to caramelize.
  • Remove from oven and serve hot. For an authentic presentation, serve with rye bread and grass-fed butter.

Notes

  • Most traditional recipes omit the garlic and only some include the mustard. Season to your own taste!
  • If you have an Ikea nearby, you can substitute herrgård cheese for the havarti, for a more traditional Scandanavian flavor.
  • For a dairy free version, you can omit the cheese and substitute the whole milk with 1 cup of the water in which the fish was boiled.
Keyword casserole, fish, plokkfiskur, stew