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I'm a bit embarrassed to be writing this review really. You see I love fish, proper fish from the fishmongers, responsibly sourced etc. Also, no ready meal has graced the shelves of my fridge for some time now, I can be quite smug about it. However this was something of an emergency. I was between meetings with 15 minutes to do a supermarket sweep (anyone remember that?) in Tescos. Aware that I also had a meeting that evening so I grabbed pizzas for the kids and Tescos Fish Pie for me, I was desperate and past caring.
Excuses over, this is what I am reviewing:
Tesco Finest 'Classics' Creamy Fish Pie - Atlantic salmon with juicy king prawns and prime smoked haddock topped with fresh mashed potato. This is their description, not mine. 700g pack, serves 2 (oink,oink) £3.50. half a pack contains: Calories 470 (oh dear!) Sugar 1.4g Fat 28.1g (ouch) Saturates 17.2g salt 2.5g
This product is suitable for freezing
Ok, so it's not health food but I was in a hurry. I had to laugh at the allergy advice, evidently it contains fish! You would hope so really wouldn't you. It also contains mustard, I've never heard of anyone being allergic to mustard but I'm sure someone out there will put me right. Also, it was made without nuts in a factory free of nuts, however they would not guarantee it nut free. They don't take many risks at Tesco do they? You just never know when a squirrel with a grudge might sneak into its nearest Tesco store and sabotage the fish pies with grated hazelnuts.
The packaging was fine with a picture far more appealing than the one Ciao have, maybe they decided to change it. The fish pie was in an aluminium tray with peel off plastic film that has to be removed before cooking, this did actually come off easily and in one piece. The cooking directions stated place on a baking tray in the centre of the oven for 30mins at 190 degrees C so that is what I did.
It smelt quite appealing but I still wasn't expecting much if I am honest, these things usually taste artificial or bland. The topping hadn't gone a nice brown colour as the illustration on the cardboard cover suggested, the potato topping had boiled and gone mushy - I think a lower heat would have been better. Transferring it from aluminium tray to plate was a messy affair but I managed to keep most of the topping on top. The potato had a pleasant cheesy taste but was a bit sloppy for my liking, it wasn't like 'proper' mash you would make at home. I wasn't that keen on the texture at all. However I was genuinely surprised by the fish. The salmon was tasty and in decent sized chunks. The King prawns actually were King prawns and not the scratty little shrimp things you get in cheap ready meals, they were a good texture too, not at all overcooked and rubbery. I was also surprised to get a good number of them, mind you I was eating a portion meant for two. The smoked haddock was again in decent sized bits and it's flavour didn't overpower the dish which it so easily could do.
It was ok actually, I ate all the fish and left some of the sloppy mash. I possibly might buy it again if I was in a hurry, but possibly the smaller 1 serving portion! At £3.50 it is good value for two people with a few veggies. Disappointingly there was nothing on the cover to tell me where the fish had been sourced, I would have liked that information.
So I would recommend it, occassionally, if you really don't have time to cook and you are not registered with weightwatchers.