Cottage Pie, made with beef, and its cousin Shepherds Pie, made with lamb, feature in our house quite a lot in the winter months, usually on a Monday evening. They are perfect for using up left over meat from the Sunday Roast, even left over carrots or peas can be added to the meat mixture, making it a very frugal dish but one that is absolutely delicious and always a welcome sight on the dinner table.
This version uses bought mince and as a nobbly celeriac had been hanging about in the vegetable bowl for rather too long I made a mash using half celeriac and half potato. Obviously you can use just potato as celeriac works out much more expensive than the humble spud.
The addition of port may seem a little extravagant but it really does lift this traditional little dish into something really special. Red wine will work as well and I’ve even used brandy on the odd occasion.
Obviously use fresh herbs if you grow them. When I made this it was dark and snowing outside and someone hadn’t put the torch back in the usual place so I didn’t venture out into the garden.
- 500g Minced Beef
- 1 Onion, chopped
- 1 Large Carrot, finely chopped
- 1 Heaped Tablespoon Flour
- ½ tsp Dried Rosemary
- ½ tsp Dried Thyme
- A few grates of nutmeg
- 180ml Beef Stock
- 1 Tbs Tomato Puree
- 2 Tbs Port
- 1 tsp Soy Sauce
- Oil for frying
- For the Mash
- 1 Medium Celeriac
- 2 Large Potatoes
- (Or about 700g of potatoes)
- Grated Parmesan (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 180c (350F)
- Cut the potatoes and celeriac up in same size chunks, bring to the boil and simmer for about 20 minutes until cooked.
- Meanwhile, heat a little oil in a frying pan, fry the onions and carrot on a medium heat until soft and colouring slightly.
- Turn the heat up and add the mince and fry until cooked.
- Add the flour and stir well.
- Add the remaining ingredients and stir well.
- Season well.
- Simmer for about ten minutes.
- Transfer to a pie dish.
- Strain the celeriac and/or potatoes when cooked.
- Mash with a knob of butter and a little cream or hot milk. Season.
- Put the mash on top of the mince and spread over using a fork. Do not press down to hard.
- Grate a little parmesan over the top if desired or dot with a little butter.
- Cook for 30 minutes until turning brown.