Shepherd’s pie

I ordered lamb mince on Ocado during the week.  As we both had fish for Good Friday, I decided to leave the mince for Saturday.   I wasn’t feeling adventurous and was thinking of making a pot of chilli when I realised that I had all the main ingredients (bar Worcestershire sauce) for Shepherd’s Pie.   You need to decide for yourself your preferred ratio of meat:potato.  I unintentionally made extra mash, but we decided to use it all up in this dish.

Ingredients: (serves 4)

A) Mash

  • 4 medium potatoes, peeled, quartered and washed
  • 2 litres boiling water
  • a knob of butter
  • 150ml (plus extra) double cream
  • a good pinch of salt for seasoning 

B) Meat filling

  • 1 large parsnip, peeled and cut into small chunks
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into small chunks
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 400g lamb mince
  • Fry lite spray
  • 1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 1 spring of rosemary
  • 1 spring of thyme
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 oxo vegetable stock cube
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • 1 tbsp kicap manis (dark soy)
  • 1 tbsp Madeira wine
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp double cream


  1. To make the mash,  add the potatoes to boiling water and cook until soft for 30 minutes
  2. Test the potatoes with a knife and if done, turn off the heat, drain using a colander and place the potatoes back into the pot
  3. Mash the potatoes with a masher until there are no lumps
  4. Add the butter followed by 150ml cream and continue mashing until the mixture is soft and creamy
  5. You may need to add extra cream for a softer consistency.  Season with salt and leave aside
  6. Pre-heat the oven at 200 degrees
  7. Place the chopped parsnip and carrot on a foil-lined baking tray
  8. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar
  9. Season with dried thyme, salt and pepper.  Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.  Remove from the oven once cooked
  10. To make the filling, brown the mince in a heavy-based pot for 2 to 3 minutes over medium heat
  11. Drain the fat/liquid (or skip this step if you prefer) and transfer the meat into a bowl
  12. Place the pot back on the heat and spray with Fry lite (I used 5 sprays)
  13. Cook the onions for 3 to 4 minutes with a pinch of salt until soft then add the garlic, rosemary and thyme
  14. Place the mince back into the pot, along with the  cooked parsnip and carrot chunks
  15. Add the tomato paste, crumbled stock cube and water.  Mix well
  16. Add the dark soy, Madeira wine and frozen peas.  Leave to cook for 15 minutes
  17. Season with salt and pepper and add the double cream.  Remove from the heat
  18. Pre-heat the grill at 220 degrees
  19. I used a 21cm x 21cm pyrex dish.  Transfer the meat filling into the dish, covering all corners
  20. Use a rubber spatula to spread the mash onto the meat filling also covering all corners
  21. Use a fork to ‘rake’ the top of the mash and grill in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes until the mash is golden.  Do keep an eye on the grill as you don’t want the mash to burn

We didn’t have any side dishes with the pie, but you could serve it with some garlic bread and tocket salad.

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