Food with JP passion - Winter-Warming Cottage Pie

By JP Kennedy

John Paul Kennedy is a self-taught cook and an avid fan of collecting cookery books with a passion for good old-fashioned home cooking. his passion for proper family cooking stems from his TWO Grandmothers, who were both excellent cooks, one of whom was a trained chef. JP promises to bring us plenty of family-inspired recipes and tasty treats while showing us how to get the basics right

This recipe is a continuation of my winter-warming dishes that are just perfect comfort-food suppers best served in a large bowl.

Most of you would call this is a shepherd’s pie, however, as it is made using minced beef and not minced lamb it’s technically really a cottage pie.

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This is a perfect go-to winter dish that at the end of a long day is just so comforting and warming to come home to.

Topped with delicious creamy mash potato and packed with delicious vegetables and gravy, this is to me the perfect version of an Irish shepherd’s pie. I promise you this will become one of your favourite recipes too.

 Ingredients (Serves 4 – 6)

  • 1 pound of good quality minced beef
  • 300ml of hot beef stock
  • 2 diced carrots
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 1 stick of celery finely chopped
  • 100g frozen peas
  • 1 tablespoon of tomato puree
  • 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
  • Dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon of freshly chopped thyme
  • 1 teaspoon freshly chopped rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons of beef gravy granules – to thicken if required
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper
  • Tablespoon of rapeseed oil

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Method:

1. Preheat your oven to 180° Celsius. Heat up the oil on a medium heat in a large casserole dish and toss in the onion, carrots, celery, fresh thyme and rosemary. Cook until softened.

2. Add the minced beef and cook until browned evenly.

3. Add the hot beef stock, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce and tomato purée and mix through to combine.

4. Season with salt and pepper, plonk a lid on and simmer for an hour or two if you have that to spare.

5. Pop the frozen peas in at the end and gravy granules.

6. Make the mash potato, mashing the potatoes well and add warmed milk, butter, salt and pepper and mix through well until velvety smooth.

7. Pop the minced beef filling into a baking dish and cover generously with the mash potato. I always use a fork to mark ridges on the top of the pie and then brush with some melted butter to get a nice crispy top with beautiful creamy soft mash underneath.

8. Place on a tray to catch any overflow from the filling that might spill whilst baking and pop into your pre-heated oven for 45 minutes until the top is lovely and golden brown and you can see some of the delicious beefy filling spilling out over the sides. Comfort food heaven, I promise you.

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