11-25: Best Ever Sole Au Gratin

This recipe is already setting high expectations with the title 11-25: Best Ever Sole Au Gratin, and I’m not here to completely dash those hopes. This is a pretty decent fish recipe, as those go (I’m usually wary of home-cooked fish recipes), but it’s nothing spectacular, despite Simply Delicious’ assertions. 🐟

11-25 Best Ever Sole Au Gratin
This one gets fancy with the piping bag and tips for the potatoes. I still haven’t replaced my piping/pastry bag set-up since it all failed during the making of 17-52: Apricot Macaroons for the holidays last year (2015). Since I’ve yet to replace it, I’ll have to get creative again.

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From this side of the card it’s obvious that this one’s been cooked before–that’s my mom’s handwriting, and judging by the date (10/19/2000), she made it when I was in the 10th grade, about a year after we had moved into a new house. This was probably a dinner attempt one night that took her longer than anticipated, judging by her noted emphasis on the length of cooking time.

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Ingredients. The mushrooms I used for this were half maitake and half shitake–between the market and the CSA I end up with a few different varieties sometimes. I’m using this lame shrimp meat for this recipe–it’s not exactly fresh or gourmet, but as long as it’s not the featured part of the dish I don’t see it as the biggest culinary crime ever committed. LF milk for whipping cream, as we do sometimes.

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I included chicken bouillon in the ingredients shot (which is what my mom subbed in when she made it, according to her notations), but I actually tracked down some fish bouillon (from Portugal, I think) on Amazon because some of the recipes in this project have been calling for it.

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It’s surprisingly hard to find in regular supermarkets around here, but I haven’t hit the Asian ones yet–I bet I’d find some there. A secondary search turns up this stuff too, which I like in theory, but tend to pass on due to limited refrigerator space.

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Shot/bowl #84794 of chopped yellow onions.

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Boiling the spuds for mashed potatoes.

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Added in my mushroom medley.

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Made the roux, added the milk/cream and whisked it together with the fish stock.

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Drained the now-soft potatoes so that they can be mashed. Doing so in the pot they were cooked in is the easiest.

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Topped the taters with an egg yolk before mashing. You can add yours in after mashing, if you want.

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Filled my seasoned sole fillets with the mushroom & onion mixture.

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Rolled & ready for what comes next–sauce & shrimp.

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Warming up my semi-frozen shrimp meat in the pan I cooked the veggies in–maybe that will redeem them somewhat.

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Ok, those look somewhat more appetizing now.

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I’ll spare you the messy details of assembling this beast, but I basically put my shrimp on top of the fish, poured the fish sauce on top, and then used a plastic gallon bag with the corner cut off (a poor man’s pastry bag) to “pipe” the potato around the edges. I finished it with the cheese covering the middle. Here goes nothing.

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A bit messy, but definitely some good color. Once you pull it off the sheet pan and wipe the sides (something I should have done before taking the picture), it’s not a terrible looking dish. Taste-wise, it worked pretty well. I haven’t had many sole-au-gratins, but this one was pretty decent. “Best ever” remains to be seen. 🏆

Grade: A-

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