This section is from the book "The Steward's Handbook And Guide To Party Catering", by Jessup Whitehead. Also available from Amazon: Larousse Gastronomique.
The meat being cut from the bones of any kind of fish, the bones.heads and tails are boiled in water with onion and any kind of herb or vegetable seasonings to make a fish broth or cullis; someroux of butter and flour is stirred over the fire in another sauce-pan and the fish broth strained to it, making a slightly thickened soup. The pieces of fish are stewed in this, with such additions as may be available, shrimps, perhaps oysters, perhaps tomatoes, white wine or cider and mushrooms, or only parsley and butter, or sliced potatoes. These additions are what give the different names to the dishes.
Perhaps the least troublesome mode of cook-jng fish is to bake it. Any fish in slices, or of small size, can be so served by putting it on a well-buttered dish with herbs, lemon juice,vinegar, mushrooms, a glass of white wine, a little stock, anchovy sauce, or anything else that the sense of the cook may suggest, and covering it with brown breadcrumbs or a sheet of buttered paper. A few minutes will make it ready for table, and all it wants is to be slipped on a dish and garnished. Fishes carefully stuffed and baked whole are generally nice; it is a method very well suited to fresh-water fish, and a delicious way of cooking mullet or a dish of whiting.
Cornwall and Wales are famous for their fish pies. This is by no means a despicable way of cooking fish, if they are tender and not bony. Eels, bass, all kinds of flat fish, lobsters, shrimps, and oysters are mostly used. The rule is to remove all bones, fins, etc.; and when the pie is nearly done, to uncover it partially, drain off the liquor, and add cream in its place, and then return a few minutes to the oven. Pies made of herring and pilchard have a plentiful allowance of scalded leeks in them.
An appetizing and novel form of sausage made from the best portions of the dogger-bank cod, and other white-fleshed fish, directly they are landed from the fisherman's boats. They are delicately and agreeably seasoned, and may be had either quite fresh or after having been lightly smoked. Fried, boiled, curried, or otherwise treated they afford a variety of excellent dishes.
A specialty at Guntor's, London. A cold raised fish pie, for balls, suppers and luncheons, made of: a raised pie case in a mould, filleted soles stewed with mushrooms, parsley, onions, wine. Fillets taken out, mushrooms, shallots, etc., chopped and mixed in Duxelles sauce. A layer of fillets soles, in the pie case, layer of compound sauce, layer of pickled lobster, layer of mayonnaise sauce, few shrimps, truffles, repeated till case is full, gelatine in the fish liquor to make jelly, poured in when nearly set; not to be baked; crust baked beforehand with filling of flour. This is a fish aspic in form of a pie.