Too Good A Dish For Any But Anglers....

Too good a dish for any but anglers....

Serves 4

Compleat Angler Izaak Walton's famous dish adapted for the 21st century.


  • 1 cleaned pike around 1500 gm
  • 300gm/12 oz (net wt after glaze) shelled oysters
  • 50gm/2 oz tin of anchovies or go authentic and use our whole fresh anchovies
  • 1 tbsp fresh marjoram or ½ tbsp dried
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme or ½ tbsp dried
  • 100gm/4 oz butter
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • juice of 4 oranges


  1. Wash the pike. Score its sides three times each, ½ inch deep. Drain the melted ice glaze from the oysters. If using whole anchovies, clean them (slit belly and rinse under tap).
  2. Chop half the anchovies into small pieces, then put them in a pan with the butter and herbs. Turn heat on low - do not aim to melt the butter - merely to soften it so these four items can be blended together.
  3. Add the oysters to the butter, gently. Do not break them.
  4. Now put this mixture in the pike's gut cavity and place it in a suitable oven-proof dish. Pour the claret and orange juice over and scatter the remaining anchovies around. Roast at 180C/375F/gas 4 for around 45 minutes, maybe a little longer. Baste every 10 minutes