Film Foods: Kiki's Delivery Service - Fish and Pumpkin Pot Pie

What's that? There's a new food segment for this blog? Yes there is!
After Noms4Noobs (which I haven't updated in a bit, sadly) and How to Cook, I wanted to add two new recipe segments, and this is one of them! I am a HUGE Ghibli addict! In fact, for my birthday the thing I wanted the most was the Ghibli Collection, with tons of classic films with original English Dubs and Japanese options. (Am I the only one who thought Disney ruined Totoro?) Since I was little Miyazaki/Studio Ghibli films have been quintessential, and I've always wanted to eat the food from the movies. I know I'm probably not the first (or last) person to do food from Ghibli films, but I wanted to do it anyways because it's fun! (Besides, this new segment isn't just going to be Ghibli.)
After food poisoning a few years ago, I still can't look at pot pies anymore, except for this one! It may sound a bit weird, but after a couple tries I got this recipe down and it's super delicious! It takes a while to make because there are a lot of parts to it, but once you get the hang of it (or someone to help) it's not that difficult. Let's get on to the food!

(Yields 6 Servings) 

You will need: 

- An Oven
- 8X8 Square Baking Pan/Dish (Approx.)
- 1 Large Skillet
- 1 Lage Pot (with Lid)
- 1 Medium Mixing Bowl
- Whisk
- Wooden Spoon
- Potato Masher (Or a Fork and some patience)
- Cutting Board
- Sharp Knife
- Vegetable Peeler
- Rolling Pin
- 1 Large Mixing Bowl (And a mixer with a dough-hook if you have it)


Pumpkin Filling (also good on it's own!) 

- 1/2 Kabucha Squash (Japanese Pumpkin)
- 2 Carrots
- 1/2 Teaspoon Soy Sauce & Pinch of Salt (For boiling water)
- Quarter of an Onion - Minced (Roughly 1/8-1/4 Cup)
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/8 Teaspoon White Pepper
- 1/2 Teaspoon Parsley
- 1/2 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
- Black Pepper to Taste

White Sauce 

- 1 Cup Heavy Cream (or Half and Half for a lighter version)
- 1/8 Teaspoon White Pepper
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 1/4 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 2 Tablespoons Butter
- 1 Teaspoon AP Flour

Crust (From Allrecipes)

- 2 Cups AP Flour
- 2/3 Cup Shortening
- 1 Teaspoon Salt
- 8 Tablespoons ICE COLD water


- 2-4 Fillets of White Fish. (You can use Herring, Flounder, Swai, etc. I've used several kinds, just get a white fish with a medium texture and flavor )
- Salt and Pepper to Season
- Non-Stick Baking Spray
- 3 Black Olives (Optional)

You can Pre-Heat the oven to 425˚F whenever you feel ready.
First, you need to prepare the fish. Thaw out your fish, if you're using frozen fillets like I did. If you're using fresh fish, make sure to clean it and check for pin bones.

Next, you need to make the Pumpkin Filling. Fill the large pot with water, add the Soy Sauce and Salt, and bring it to a boil.

Take the Kabucha and carefully cut it in half, and then into quarters. Use the Peeler to take the green skin off. It's alright if there are a few spots on it, but try to get a majority of it off.

Once you have it peeled, scoop out the seeds and clean it out. (Notice I didn't peel the stem/tips of the squash, because I'm cutting it off in the next step.)

Cut the Pumpkin into equal pieces so that they finish cooking at the same time. Make them roughly 1/2-1 Inch cubes. 

Peel the Carrots and cut them up into roughly the same size. It's not a lot of Carrot, because it's mainly to improve the color and add a bit of texture. 

Add the Carrots and Kabucha into the pan once it gets to a boil, cover it, and cook them for about 10 Minutes or until it's soft. (I put a toothpick under the lid to prevent it from boiling over.)

Once they finish cooking, drain the water and set them aside. Heat the Large Skillet to Med-High and add the Olive Oil. Next, add the Onion, Salt, and Pepper, and saute until the Onion starts to sweat. Add the boiled vegetables and the rest of the Spices, and cook them together in the pan for roughly 5 Minutes. 

Take the Vegetable Mixture out of the pan and put it into the Medium bowl. Mash everything together until the Pumpkin is smooth. The Carrots may be a little chunky, but that's alright. (Taste it and make any adjustments if needed.) Set it aside to cool. 

Next, it's time to start working on the Dough! Add the Shortening, Flour, and Salt into the mixing bowl. (You can mix with a wooden spoon and then move on to hand kneading as well, I used a Dough Hook on the mixer so I could multitask.) 

Gradually add the Ice Water one Tablespoon at a time, while continuing to mix everything together. It will still look a bit dry at first, but don't add any more water until you've finished kneading it and know it's too dry. I needed all 8, you may only need 6 or 7, just eyeball the dough and stop early if you feel like you need to. 

Knead it until it looks smooth and shiny, and set it aside to rest. It should be moist and pliable.

Now it's time to work on the Sauce! Add the Cream and Butter to the Skillet, and put it on Med-Low heat to melt the Butter. 

Bring it to a simmer and add the Salt and Spices, while whisking it all together. Let it simmer this way for about 2 Minutes. 

Next, slowly add in the Flour while quickly whisking it in to avoid clumps. Let it simmer for 5 Minutes or more while stirring it, you need to cook it until it gets to a thick consistency. You want it to be like a loose Alfredo Sauce. 

Turn off the heat and let it cool on the side while you assemble the pie. (No disassemble, Stephanie! Johnny 5 is alive! .....I don't know if anyone will get that reference...) 

Anyways! The first thing you need to do it divide the dough into quarters. 

Roll out 1/3 to the size of your Pan. Spray the bottom with the Non-Stick Spray, and spread out the dough. (This keeps everything from sticking to the bottom.) 

Next, spread out the Pumpkin on top and smooth it out. 

Take your Fish and season both sides generously with Salt and Pepper, and lay them on top.

Next, spread out the sauce on top of everything. 

Roll out another 1/3 of the Dough, and place it on top of everything, sealing the edges as best as you can. 

Take a 1/3 off of the last piece of Dough, and separate that into 3 pieces. Roll each piece out into a thin strip the length of the pan.

Line the up on top of the pie. 

Divide the rest of the dough in half. Shape one half into an oval and roll it out. Then, shape it into a fish by pulling the end out to form the tail. 

Place it on top of the pie. Use the rest of the dough to form the face and fins of your fish. I used a picture from the movie to shape mine, but you can make yours however you like! 

Optional: Slice the olives and place them at the end of each stripe. Finally, spread the Olive Oil on the top of everything to help it brown in the Oven. 

Bake at 425˚F for 40 Minutes, or until the top is brown and crispy. Take it out and allow it to cool, and you're done! 

Now that it's finished you can enjoy! Here's a picture of what it looks like on the inside as well!

That's all there is to it! There are a lot of steps, but it's worth it in the end! It's a kind of unique flavor, but it's also really good. It's definitely my favorite type of Pot Pie these days! I made it in a square pan, but you can make it in a Oval Dish around the same size, if you want to stick a bit more true to the film. I hope you can make it, and like it as much as I do! And why not make a night of it and watch Kiki's Delivery Service while you eat? I know I did! 

Enjoying the Noms of their labor,