Jul 30, 2013


The Boathouse’s Fish Pie with Snapper and Truffle Oil

The Boathouse's Snapper Pie with Truffle OilThe Boathouse is a restaurant in Glebe, Sydney whose signature dish is this snapper pie. Their pie is so famous and so delicious that I’ve never ordered anything else when I’ve dined there, nor has anyone else I know. If I were them I would simplify life and just take everything else off the menu, apart perhaps from their freshly shucked oysters. It’s one of those genius recipes that combine a few ingredients and turns them into something magical. The fish in the pie is cooked in a simple sauce soubise which is a classical French sauce made from onions.  Now one wouldn’t normally think of pairing fish with a sauce soubise but it works incredibly well and topped with some truffle oil and buttery, flaky pastry it’s fish pie nirvana. The Boathouse serves their pie with a side of mash and a smoked whole tomato (another unusual pairing which again works a treat) but for ease, I prefer to serve it at home with some steamed green beans and home made crusty garlic bread to dip into the pie once the pastry has gone.

Ingredients – makes 4 individual pies

Fish Pie
600g snapper, skinned, de-boned and cut into 4 cm pieces
3 tablespoons best quality white truffle oil
1 onion, finely diced
1 packet of all pre-rolled, all butter puff pastry
1 egg, lightly beaten

Soubise Sauce
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoon olive oil
750g onions, thinly sliced
150ml fish stock, if you can’t find very good quality fish stock use chicken stock instead
400ml cream
Salt & freshly ground black pepper

For the soubise sauce , heat the butter and 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large heavy based saucepan. Add sliced onions and 1 teaspoon sea salt and cook, stirring occasionally, over medium-low heat for 30 minutes or until onions are very soft and golden, you want to achieve a nice deep colour on the onions without scorching them. Add the stock and simmer until reduced by half . Add cream and simmer until reduced by half, then remove from heat and cool.

For the fish pie, preheat oven to 220C. Heat the remaining olive oil in a small saucepan and cook the finely chopped onion, stirring occasionally over medium heat for 10 minutes or until soft. Process cream mixture in a food processor until smooth, then transfer sauce to a bowl. Stir in chopped onions and season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of soubise sauce into the base of 4 ovenproof dishes and add a layer of snapper pieces.

Drizzle with some truffle oil and repeat layers to fill each dish 2cm from top. Place the pastry on a lightly floured surface and cut out pieces that are 3cm larger than your dishes. Cover pies with pastry, pressing pastry to side of dish and brush with beaten egg. Bake for 20 minutes or until pastry is golden and puffed. Stand pies for 5 minutes before serving.

Boathouse Snapper Pie with Truffle Oil

32 thoughts on “The Boathouse’s Fish Pie with Snapper and Truffle Oil

  1. We made a baked seafood soup with puffed pastry that came out beautifully. We’ll give this a go with rockfish fillets.

  2. Pingback: boathouse menu glebe | Blog boathouse-bar.com

  3. Thank you for this recipe – we tried it over the weekend and it turned out amazing! We have been to the Boathouse a few times and always loved the snapper pie there. So happy that now we are able to cook it easily at home. Thank you again!

  4. One of my favourite recipes. Normally I serve this dish in a traditional lions head ramekin with rocket around the base, which can be added to the pie once you have cracked to puff pastry providing additional texture and flavour.

  5. Thanks very much for this recipe, I have cooked it numerous times over the past 4 years. Cheers

  6. Hello MwM, While savouring the fish pie at the Boathouse, I thought, I bet someone’s blog has this recipe and it’s yours ! I’ve just done an inspired version with chicken, as practice, until I find some snapper. So damn delicious. Thank you lovely for this recipe and the blog is amazing. Coming back for more, CC x

    • Hi CC, how funny that you should think that and then find my blog as a result! So glad you “dropped” in and love the idea of using chicken in the pie rather than fish – some people in my family don’t like seafood and I never thought of doing a chicken version as an alternative.

  7. love this recipe, my all time fav !!!! Can you suggest any sides to go with the pie?

    • Hi Raj, glad you enjoyed the recipe! At the boathouse this pie is served with mashed potato and a smoked whole tomato – sounds weird I know but it works! I find the mashed potatoes too heavy so I serve it at home with toasted garlic bruschetta (basically good quality artisan bread sliced and drizzled with olive oil then baked until toasted and crisp and rubbed with a garlic clove). I love dunking the bread into the sauce of the pie. I also do a side of simple steamed green beans.

  8. Hi, any recommendations for what brand white truffle oil, puff pastry, and fish stock to use?

    • Hi Patrick, I actually use chicken stock instead of fish stock as I like the fish flavour to be quite subtle. Not sure where you live but I buy any brand that is free range. Maggie Beer has a nice one and actually the supermarkets now also stock more premium stocks. Puff pastry I buy all butter. Pampas has a nice one as does Careme. As far as truffle oil goes – you get what you pay for so the more expensive the better the flavour and aroma. Check the ingredients to make sure it has real white truffle in it. Hope you try the recipe and that you enjoy it!

  9. Hi there

    Am trying this recipe for the first time and it smells AMAZING!! Just wondering if there is any reason to not mix through the truffle oil right before assembling instead of drizzling? Can’t wait to try the finished product. Thanks for sharing this.

    • Hi Fernsie, glad the pie smell so good – you’ll find it tastes even better! I find that by drizzling the truffle oil at then end and just before assembling, the smell of the truffle oil is more pronounced when you break into the pie, but certainly no reason to not mix it through just make sure it’s just before you assemble and place it in the oven as the truffle oil can lose it’s fragrance quite quickly.

  10. I have been looking for this recipe for a while! Thank you and I really appreciate for sharing this. My 6 yr old & I managed to find all the ingredients! It took 2 hours, hardest was to find good truffle albeit we live in Melbourne AU. Finally, managed to find a really good drop. Our local fishmonger always carries a small quantity of deep-sea fish (not farmed). We found a good fresh red snapper. The fishmonger was kind enough to cut, debone, skin the ” aquatic creature”.


    My daughter and I really enjoyed the cooking process. She was hands-on and loved every moment of the process. We followed your steps religiously but we made a wee bit of changes:

    1) for the soubise sauce we used red onions (organic) and used Lactose-free cream
    2) Added bit of smoked paprika
    3) Added bit of Cumin
    4) a wee bit of turmeric (had to do it, I used to grow turmeric back in Sri Lanka)

    Out of the stratosphere! My wife was gobsmacked and pleasantly surprised with the outcome. My son loved it too. We all loved it and enjoyed thoroughly. We even sprinkled more Truffle oil on crusty bread!

    Puree of Organic Sweet Potato
    Blanch and Sauteed Broccolini

    Once again, thank you so much for posting this recipe and sharing the love!

    • Manjula, Thank you for your lovely comment. I love it that you gave the dish a little of your own spin and that you cooked it with your daughter! It’s great to know that it worked out well using lactose free cream. So glad that all your efforts paid off and that you enjoyed the final dish. I do think a good truffle oil makes all the difference!

  11. I’ve been using this recipe for past few years and I have made it again today…
    It turned out delicious, just as It did the first time.
    Thanks for posting your recipe, it’s a favourite of mine and brings back memories of the restaurant

  12. Any tips on cooking this for 4 people in one large baking dish?

    • Kylee, I’ve never tried cooking this in one tray but it should still work out fine and I don’t think the cook time would be too different – I would add any extra 5-7 minutes. If you try it please come back and let me know how it worked out.

  13. I love your recipe and make if often. I use ling instead of snapper as it is a tasty white fish that cooks well and holds its shape. It’s a great dinner party dish as it can be prepared earlier on the day and then just put in oven 30 mins before hand.

  14. Back in the late 90’s or perhaps 2000 I visited The Boathouse for lunch and had the amazing Snapper Pie which I have remembered ever since! I haven’t entertained formally for many years but will be doing so in 2 weeks. I decided to make that pie and searched online, only to find the very recipe on this site!!! Thank you! And with such positive comments it is very reassuring. Wish me luck….

  15. Made it yesterday (here in Sydney) and it was DELICIOUS!!! I wanted to make the Snapper Pie famous from Garfish so I added broccolini to the inside of the pie. I’ve never heard of The Boathouse in Glebe despite being a Sydneysider 🙂

  16. I made this dish last night for my Mum and my two daughters. I’ve always had fond memories of the Boathouse and could never go past the Snapper Pie. I made it as a family sized pie and was happily surprised with the result. I added some garlic to the sauce (garlic is good in everything right?). I did the Parisian mash , broccolini and the roasted truss baby tomatoes on the side drizzed with balsamic, helped cut through the creaminess of the pie. I so wish we could all share photos of our results. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. Can’t wait to make it again.

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