Winter is well and truly here. The weather has turned from the pretty leaves on the ground stage to doonas and incredibly unattractive long john stage. With that in mind, comfort food is the way to go and nothing spells out comfort food like Shepherd Pie.
This particular recipe was taken from Taste.com.au with a few tiny modification on my part. I have to apologise for the unlovely photo, but I have not quite mastered the art of making pies look rustic and glamorous all in the same shot ala Donna Hay. Trust me though, this is one hell of a delicious pie!
Ingredients (serves 4 easily)
- 1 tbs vegetable oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 large carrot, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 tbs sundried tomato pesto
- 1 cup (250ml) canned dice tomatoes
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 tbs chopped thyme
- 1 cup (250ml) vegetable stock
- 300g can lentils, rinsed, drained
- 250g vegetarian mince
- 800g potatoes, peeled, chopped
- 100g unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup (125ml) milk
- 100g grated cheddar (see note)
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- Preheat the oven to 200°C. In a large pan, heat oil over medium heat and cook onion for 1-2 minutes. Add celery, carrot and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add pesto, canned tomatoes, bay, thyme and stock.
- Simmer gently for 15 minutes until vegetables are cooked. Stir in lentils vegetarian mince and season, then transfer to a 1.2-litre baking dish. Sprinkle nutmeg throughout. Meanwhile, cook potatoes in boiling salted water until tender.
- Drain and mash. Stir in butter, milk and cheese. Spread over lentil and mince mixture and roughen top with a fork. Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbling and goldenNotes: I added vegetarian mince to add a bit more texture to the pie, a bit of nutmeg also gives it a bit of zing. The original recipe instructed to stir 2 yolks into the mash, but you don’t really need eggs for this pie.
I am listening to Lissie while I am typing this, their show at the Oxford Art Factory not so long ago still fresh in my mind. For whatever reason I forgot she wrote ‘Everywhere I Go’, the last song played in the final episode of the Dollhouse. There’s something so hauntingly sad about the song that matched the last hour of a day before another Monday passed away.
Catch you next Monday for another blog, if not before…