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Cod Fish Pot Pie • Alaska • Culinary Tour Around the World

January 15, 2011 by Joan Nova in Baking, Blogging, Culinary Tour Around the World, Fish/Seafood, Food Challenge, Travel Retrospectives | 27 Comments

Welcome to Alyeska…”the great land”…”the last frontier”…the 49th state.

Alaska is the home of six distinct groups of American Indians/Alaskan natives; European settlers; families of gold-miners, lumberjacks, oilmen, fishermen, and…you betcha, Sarah Palin.

While the state may be known for whaling, hunting and fishing, my many forays into google looking for a sense of the cuisine didn’t result in any specific culinary approach to all that natural wildlife. I found very global recipes based on the state’s bounty. (My recipe came from the Alaska Seafood website.)

A few facts before we eat:
State Motto: North to the future.
State Fish: King Salmon
State Sport: Dog mushing.
State Gem: Jade
State Mineral: Gold
Most important revenue source: oil and gas
Fishing: largest private employer
Lakes: 3 million (sounds like they’re including puddles)
Daylight: Some areas have 24 hours of daylight (or night)
Distance to Russia: 55 miles – you can see it from some backyards.

Since Alaska is brrr-cold for my thinned-out Florida blood, I was at first attracted to the soups but then I saw this recipe for Cod Fish Pot Pie.  It appealed to me on a practical level because it was cod-based (and I had cod). I also liked that it included anchovy as part of the base flavoring and, lastly, I saw it as a challenge since I’d never made pot pie.

I started out following the recipe…though, early on, I began making it ‘my own’ by substituting no-fat half + half for the milk, changing the celery root to potatoes, carrots + peas…and, finally, just not paying attention to the recipe at all. 

This is where it got really ballsy (pardon my crudeness but there’s just no other way to say it). You see, all I want to do is cook, photograph and eat. I do not want to jump through mathematical hoops to figure how to reduce quantites. So that’s what I did.

Having limited-to-zero experience with rouxes, cream sauces or pot pies (dare you to find any on my blog), I just started eyeballing the amount of butter, cream, and flour I was throwing in the mix. Don’t ask me why I do this. It’s part of my dna. Culinarily-speaking, I live on the edge.

The good thing iswhen you’ve eaten (and cooked) as many meals as I have, that culinary instinct just naturally kicks in! (Most times.)

I can’t wait to see what the other bloggers bring to this stop.

Blogger Round-Up: Wednesday, January 19
Next Stop: Turkey, January 23
Event info + details

NOTE: Some recipes found on FOODalogue are offered without ingredient quantities. They're meant as a guide to food pairings and techniques to be experimented with … in your own kitchen … to your own spice and taste levels … to your preferred portion sizes … and to however many people you’re cooking for. A perfect meal has multiple levels of flavor and textures, bright colors and tastes, and healthy(ish) choices. It's all about enjoyment. Enjoy the process, the presentation and the just rewards...eating!


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  1. Peter says:

    You lucked out on the crust…looks fab! Here’s hoping hoping the next pastry/crust is just as good.

  2. redkathy says:

    Oh Joan, you know I like cod fish. This is exciting!! Never would I have thought of using cod in a pot pie. This is great one to test on the family, comfort and fish rolled into one!

  3. bellini says:

    Mmmmmm. I can’t say I have ever had a cod pot pie but my eastern blood had me eating plenty of chicken pot pies in my life time. Love the Alaskan twist Joan. I will see you there. So far my flight is right on time.

  4. That looks amazing!! What a pie!!

  5. “Culinarily-speaking, I live on the edge.” Best quote ever! The pie looks gorgeous Joan…trust those instincts and you certainly will be rewarded!

  6. norma says:

    As you know pot pies are my favorite comfort food. I love this post and the pie is just perfect. All that pastry to soak up all that cream…

  7. Brii says:

    aaaaaaaaaah Joan!
    your are fantastic!!!
    hope no one will get upset over this dish!!

  8. I can’t wait to see what other bloggers bring to it, either – but nothing could be better than this – and the photos are spectacular. The buttery crust and the creamy cod. YUM!

  9. sippitysup says:

    Always something to learn at FOODalogue! If I participated I’d probably wanna butcher a “mama grizzly”, you can see how that sort of political discourse could be bad these days… GREG

  10. giz says:

    One would never know there’s a lack of experience in the pot pie department. Cod pot pie would be amazing (just had cod for dinner last night).

  11. Jamie says:

    Well, this old Florida girl would put up with the cold (and memorize the fun facts about Alaska) for a plateful of this fabulous fish pie! I am so tempted to make this!!!

  12. Rich says:

    Wow, for having never made pot pie, you certainly knocked that out pretty handily – it looks fantastic!

  13. Damaris says:

    What a fun post. I love cod and wild Alaska seafood has some amazing cod.

  14. zerrin says:

    This is absolutely an outstanding pie! The pictures are gorgeous!A must try recipe for me. I guess I will use celery root, not potatoes as I do love the flavor of celery. Thanks for introducing Alaska seafood to us!

  15. Ben says:

    When you said Alaska was one of the stops for this year’s tour I really didn’t know what to expect. But this pie sounds and looks just amazing. It’s making me hungry.

  16. The recipes on this blog are so unique and I love your header!

    Thank for the kind message via twitter.

  17. The cod fish pot pie sounds wonderfully delicious, love that beautiful golden pastry on top!

  18. This looks declicious! Let me know when you are going to Tuscany, if you want, I can suggest a couple of restaurants/foods to try!

  19. I’ve never made pot pie before either but that crust looks perfect and it looks like your culinary instincts were spot on. This cod fish pot pie looks wonderful and thanks for the education on Alaska. :-)

  20. Lori Lynn says:

    One would think you had been making pot pies for years. It looks fantastic! Great stop for your tour! I’m coming along too!

  21. Torwen says:

    It certainly doesn’t look like ‘zero experience’ :)buth rather very professional,in any case very very tasty. I should try this (this recipe should also work without the fish). I’ve never done a pot pie, either. So your post was very encouraging.

  22. This is fabulous and the crusty flakey top is enough to stop anyone in their tracks….can see russia from some backyards eh??? lol…

    Also eyeballing? ofcourse we eyeball – its in our genetic code – the way of our grand mothers and great grandmothers!

    chow! Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

  23. Angela says:

    I’ve never made a pot pie and you don’t seem to have never made it before! Very interesting the use of anchovy…I think you won your personal challenge with pot pie!

  24. J Campos says:

    It looks very tasty. It’s another different way to cook cod fish.
    J Campos recently posted..Codfish in olive oil recipe – Bacalhau a lagareiroMy Profile

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  2. […] bit late I join the second trip of Joan’s Culinary Tour 2011 (known through the tireless Cindystar)… to land in Alaska […]

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