Today has been great. Two play dates, plenty of quality time with family and friends and to top it all off a cracking fish pie. We started off with a visit from York*. One of Z's colleagues was in town early to drop his partner off for the Leeds 10k. That left him at a lose end. We invited him and his little boy around to ours for bacon sarnies, coffee and so that the two toddlers could run around for a couple of hours. R is about 8 months younger than our guest and the difference was staggering. The range of language, dexterity and turn of pace that I am about to encounter is quite simply scary. I think I'm going to need to get into shape!
They left, before lunch, to pick up their runner. I know nothing about 10k's and what a good time represents but you never know what this time next year will bring. Before heading out for our second play date of the day we had time to knock up a quick fish pie. Cod cheeks and smoked haddock were poached in a pint of milk with some onion, black pepper corns and parsley stalks for about five minutes.
Once lightly cooked, the fish was flaked into the bottom of an oven proof dish with some prawns and garden peas and set aside. The infused milk was then slowly poured over a roux to form the sauce for the pie and the whole lot was covered with a generous layer of fluffy mashed potato. The completed pie was then covered and placed in the fridge until it was needed.
Our second play date took us to Leeds Museum with friends from the other side of Manchester. We completely forgot that when he left Leeds to find his fortune, the museum didn't exist. Fortunately all men are able to navigate by pubs, even in towns that they have never been in before, so it wasn't long before he turned up with his daughter. This time R was the elder of the two toddlers but rather than lead by example he regressed to crawling around the place. I think he was flirting!
Back home all that we needed to do for our family meal was put the pie on the oven for around 45 minutes. The fluffy mash was even creamier once it had soaked up some of the white sauce and the fish was cooked perfectly, because we had only partially poached them earlier. Hopefully after all of the excitement and a really comforting meal, we won't hear a peep out of R until it's time to get up.
*not all of it!