REPOST: Shepherd or Cottage?

Another week, another cottage pie – here’s the old post with refreshed photos 🙂 

This was the first ever ‘proper’ dish I made. I was 15 and it blew my mind. It opened up the world of cooking ‘proper’ food, as oppose to baking all those ‘fluffy’ cake recipes.It was pretty easy and I liked the taste of my own cooking. I was proud of myself!

Problem is I never quite knew whether I was making a shepherds or cottage pie… I like to use mince beef, and add peas… what does this mean?! Here’s what the internet tells me:

“the difference between the two is cottage pie is mince because the cottage is on the farm with the cows and shepherd’s pie is made with lamb because shepherds look after the sheep and lambs” 

I LOVE this description! I’ve clearly been making cottage pie this whole time and not even realised… in my little book with all my top secret recipes in, I’d written shepherds pie… big mistake!

So after years of confusion, here’s my new cottage pie recipe:

Shepherds (oops I mean Cottage) Pie (serves 5)

1 tbsp sunflower oil

500g beef mince

1 onion, chooped ( I usually use 1 leek when I’m cooking for my boyfriend – it gives a much milder taste)

5 carrots, chopped

2 tbsp tomato puree

Splash of Worcestershire sauce

500ml beef stock

2 tsp mixed herbs

100g frozen peas

2 tbsp plain flour

Salt and pepper

900g potatoes, chopped

40g butter

3 tbsp milk

Black pepper

  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan then soften the onion/leek and carrots for 5 minutes.
  2. Crumble in the mince and cook until browned. Then drain any excess fat away
  3. Add the stock, stirring gently for 2 minutes
  4. Add the tomato puree and Worcestershire sauce, cooking for a further 5 minutes
  5. Meanwhile take the flour and carefully add water, making a thick paste
  6. Take a spoonful of the mixture and add to the flour paste, stirring quickly
  7. Then add this back into the saucepan and thoroughly stir, making sure the sauce is starting to thicken.
  8. Add the frozen peas, mixed herbs and season to taste
  9. Cover and simmer for 15-20 mins minutes
  10. Meanwhile preheat the oven to 180 degrees
  11. To make the mash, boil the potatoes in salted water for 15 minutes until soft. Drain then mash with the butter and milk. Add a pinch of black pepper
  12. Place the mince mixture into an ovenproof dish and top with the mash, ruffling the top with a fork (add grated cheese if desired)
  13. Bake for a further 20 minutes, until the top has browned





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