Fish Pie

by Jon Sullivan - 2020-03-21 - Stories

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When I was a child in Montana we ate a lot of fish pie. But it was really quiche.

As we all shelter in place and horde supplies, I think back on what we would have done when I was growing up. I think we basically would have done nothing out of the ordinary. My parents moved from California to Montana so they could live away from it all and be self sufficient. So we had freezers full of food we'd grown, raised, hunted, etc. Plenty of supplies, since stores were a long ways away. And of course no

Back then, 40 years ago, "fish pie" was a common farm meal. And while quiche with wild trout and asparagus might sound fancy, it was just mom using up ingredients we had too much of. I remember rolling my eyes at dad as he tried to explain how much you'd have to pay for it in a fancy California restaurant. Pfft. Sure dad... Fancy. "But for us", he would say, "it's just common peasant food."

It was rainbow trout that he and I had caught in the mountain lakes. Eggs from the chickens we raised ("farm fresh free range" LOL). Milk and cheese from other small farms around us. Wild asparagus mom would pick from along the road. Garlic and herbs we grew ourselves in huge gardens. Maybe some wild mushrooms we saw while gathering firewood for the winter.

Now that I live in the city, and enjoy going to pricey restaurants, I finally realize...... Yeah.... That was pretty fuckin fancy. Actually.... What the heck??!! As a modern chef in the US you'd need some serious attitude to even try and source those ingredients.

"NO!!! Not farmed wild mushrooms!!! Actually wild mushrooms. Like there needs to be bear shit nearby when you picked it." Bear shit was rather ubiquitous where we got firewood.

So 40 years later..... And the most pretentious hipster quiche imaginable is just comfort food from my childhood. Peasant food really.

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