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So my lovely Canadian friends, first, let me say what an honour it is to have a new weekly column here in The Globe and Mail. Canada is a country I feel a real affinity with – I've been lucky enough to visit several times in the last couple of years and I'm always blown away by everyone's warmth and welcoming spirit, by the brilliant food scene and by the incredible amount of seasonal produce you lot are lucky enough to get your hands on.

With this column, I'm going to share some of my very best recipes, and I'll be covering everything from exciting healthy food to quick fixes, from comfort food to great value recipes (that'll rival the price of any takeout!), and of course, favourites that the whole family will love. I've got a plan of what I want to do, but I also want to react to what's relevant for you guys, so please do let me know what you think along the way.

Now, let's get down to business. What I love about cooking is that you can look at the weather, look at what's in season, and consider how you feel, then react to that in what you choose to make. This week, I'm kicking off with this beautiful fish pie – a delicious treat, perfect for the holiday season. Some of the best fish in the world comes from Canadian waters, and this is a real celebration of that, so feel free to mix up your choices depending on what's available to you. For me, this dish demonstrates that real comfort food has the power to disarm us and to make us feel like we've had a big, loving hug.

Have a Happy Christmas, and I look forward to sharing more with you next week.

Have a question for Jamie Oliver? Email or tweet @GlobeStyle with the hashtag #jamieatglobe. For more information, go to

Servings: 8 to 10

Mash topping

3½ pounds (1.75 kilograms) Yukon Gold potatoes

¼ cup cheddar cheese

2 knobs of unsalted butter

Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Parsley sauce

3 onions

1 bulb of fennel

Olive oil

2½ cups whole milk

4 cloves

2 bay leaves

7 tablespoons unsalted butter

¼ cup plain flour

1 teaspoon English mustard

¼ cup cheddar cheese

½ bunch fresh curly parsley


1 pound (500 grams) skinless sole fillets, from sustainable sources

1 pound (500 grams) skinless smoked haddock fillets, from sustainable sources

¾ pound (375 grams) skinless salmon fillets, from sustainable sources

½ pound (250 grams) peeled prawns, from sustainable sources

Pastry layer

1 pound (500 grams) all-butter puff pastry

Plain flour, for dusting

1 large free-range egg

Lettuce peas

2 pounds (1 kilogram) frozen peas

3 gem lettuces

6 green onions

White wine vinegar

3 tablespoons unsalted butter


Start by making the mash topping. Peel, roughly chop and cook the potatoes in boiling salted water for 12 to 15 minutes, or until tender. Drain, then return to the pan for a few minutes to steam dry.

Grate in the cheese and add half the butter, then season with sea salt and black pepper. Mash well and leave to cool.

For the parsley sauce, peel and finely slice 2 onions and trim and finely slice the fennel. Add to a saucepan with a splash of oil and cook over a medium-low heat for 15 minutes, or until softened.

Pour the milk into another pan. Peel and quarter the remaining onion, then stud each quarter with a clove. Pop into the milk along with the bay leaves.

Bring just to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 6 minutes. Remove and discard the onion and bay leaves, reserving the milk.

Add butter to a frying pan along with the sautéed onion and fennel. Stir in flour and cook over a medium heat for 1 minute.

Gradually pour in milk a little at a time, stirring after each addition, until the sauce has thickened. Stir in mustard and grate in the cheese. Using a hand blender, blitz until smooth, then pick, chop and stir in the parsley leaves.

Preheat oven to 350 F. Use a little olive oil to grease the inside of a 9 x 11-inch pie dish.

Press the cooled mash into the dish, a handful at a time, covering the bottom and sides in a 2-inch layer. Reserve remaining mash.

On a board, cut the sole fillets lengthways into 1-inch strips, then roll them up. Place all the fish and the prawns into the lined mash dish and ladle in parsley sauce to cover (keep any remainder to serve).

Top with remaining mash, pat it flat, scuff it up with a fork and pinch at the edges to create gnarly textures.

Dust a clean work surface with some flour and roll out the pastry with a floured rolling pin, until it’s the thickness of a quarter. Beat the egg, then egg wash the rim of the pie dish.

Place pastry over the top of the dish and crimp it at the edges. Brush the top with more beaten egg, decorate with any remaining pastry and brush with egg wash again.

Bake the pie on the bottom of the oven for 1 hour 10 minutes, or until pastry is puffed up and golden.

To make the lettuce peas, pop peas in a large saucepan over a medium heat and let them defrost for 4 minutes.

Trim lettuces and green onions, then finely slice them and add to the pan with a dash of vinegar and the butter. Stir together then let lettuce wilt for 4 to 5 minutes.

Serve the pie with lettuce peas and any leftover parsley sauce on the side.