Cullen skink is one of Britain’s best soups: full-flavoured, hearty, and comfortingly creamy.
smoked haddock fillets, bay leaves, knob of butter, 1 onion, peeled and chopped, 1 leek, chunks potatoes, chunks, 500ml whole milk, chives, chopped
Put the fish into a pan large enough to hold it comfortably, and cover with about 300ml cold water. Add the bay leaf, and bring gently to the boil. By the time it comes to the boil, the fish should be just cooked – if it’s not, then give it another minute or so. Remove from the pan, and set aside to cool. Take the pan off the heat.
Melt the butter in another pan on a medium-low heat, and add the onion and the leek. Cover and allow to sweat, without colouring, for about 10 minutes until softened. Season with black pepper.
Add the potato and stir to coat with butter. Pour in the haddock cooking liquor and bay leaf, and bring to a simmer. Cook until the potato is tender. Meanwhile, remove the skin, and any bones from the haddock, and break into flakes. Lift out a generous slotted spoonful of potatoes and leeks, and set aside. Discard the bay leaf. Add the milk, and half the haddock to the pan, and either mash roughly or blend until smoothish. Season to taste, and serve with a generous spoonful of the potato, leek and haddock mixture in each bowl, and a sprinkling of chives.