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Bowl of cullen skink

Cullen Skink Recipe

The Homesteading Hippy
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Cuisine Scottish
Calories 288 kcal


  • 1 pound haddock filets or any other smoked white fish
  • 1 pint milk
  • ½ pound mashed potato 2 large potatoes
  • 2 leeks
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • bay leaf
  • flat leaf parsley or coriander leaves separated from stalks


  • Cut potatoes in chunks, place in saucepan with sufficient water, bring to the boil and simmer until soft.
  • Drain water and mash potatoes. If you prefer, the potatoes can be left in chunks and added to the soup.
  • Pour the milk into a saucepan, add the bay leaf, the parsley or coriander stalks and the haddock fillets.
  • Bring to the boil then turn down the heat and allow to simmer for around 3 minutes.
    haddock poaching in milk
  • Turn off the heat and leave to let the haddock flavor infuse into the liquid for another 5 minutes or so.
  • Remove the fish and the bay leaf from the milk and set haddock aside to cool so you can later break the fish up into chunks. Discard the bay leaf.
  • Heat the butter in a separate saucepan and add the leeks that have been sliced into discs, stirring now and again to make sure they turn translucent and don't burn – this should take around 5 minutes.
    leeks frying
  • Stir the mashed potato into the milk once you have removed the parsley/cilantro stalks, or you can combine potato and milk in a blender and instead of discarding the stalks they can be blended with the milk and mashed potato.
    milk and potatoes blended
  • Add the leeks and stir the fish chunks into the soup carefully so the fish pieces remain larger to provide a texture contrast to the smoothness of the potato and milk mix and the leeks.
  • The fish is salty so you probably won’t need any extra salt – always taste before adding salt. It’s easier to add than to try and tone down an over salty dish.
  • Place the fish soup into bowls and garnish with a little chopped parsley or cilantro. If you want to add a little extra color to the bowl of soup add a fine sprinkle of dried paprika.
  • Serve with a slice of bread (link to Dutch oven articles)