Kippers Cullen Skink

Kippers Cullen Skink

Cullen skink soup is traditionally made with smoked haddock but I find the sweet taste of kipper to be better. Ask your fishmonger to fillet and skin the kipper, or do this yourself, but take care when removing the pinbones to be sure you get them all. I find that warming the kipper first makes the bones come out more easily.

For how many? Serves 4 as a starter or 2 for lunch


  • 15g unsalted butter
  • 1 medium white onion, finely chopped
  • 300g potatoes, peeled and cut into 2cm pieces
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 600ml milk
  • 1 whole kipper, preferably a Craster kipper, filleted and skinned
  • 3 tbsp double cream
  • 2 tbsp chopped parsley
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


1. Melt the butter in a large heavy-based saucepan. Add the onion and cook until softened.

2. Add the potatoes, bay leaf and milk. Bring just to the boil, then simmer for 10–15 minutes until the potatoes are soft.

3. Meanwhile, check the kipper fillets for pinbones and remove any with tweezers, then flake the fillets into pieces. Add most of the kipper pieces to the saucepan and season with salt and pepper.

4. Blitz the soup roughly with a hand blender, then stir in the cream and most of the chopped parsley. Reheat if necessary and serve hot, garnished with the remaining kipper pieces and parsley.

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