Saturday, January 24, 2009

Cottage Pie

I got the recipe for this super yummy Cottage Pie from one of my favorite food blogs, Picky Palate ( I really admire Jenny and her inventive recipes. I hope to one day progress enough in my cooking to make up my own recipes more often myself.

I call this Cottage Pie because technically, it has no lamb in it, which is what makes it different from Shepherd's Pie. But really, most people in America don't differientiate it. So, if calling it Shepherd's Pie blows your skirt up, go for it. It just may not be "politically correct". Whatever that means, anyway.

This recipe is really, really good. It's perfect for a cold winter day. Super comforting, and the recipe makes a huge amount. I had enough to fill this pretty Emile Henry baking dish you see above AND 8 individually portioned ramekins. I served 4 of the individual portioned ramekins to my hubby and 2 of our friends the night I made it, and then froze all the rest. It froze really well and made for lots of easy, quick meals for my hubby and I later.

I defintely recommend this recipe! Served along with a nice, green salad, you just can't go wrong!

Cottage Pie
recipe courtesy Jenny Flake,


Mashed Potato Topping

4 lbs peeled cubed potatoes

½ Cup butter, 1 stick

1 Cup shredded mozzarella cheese

¼ teaspoon cumin

¾ Cup warm milk

1 ¼ teaspoon salt

¾ teaspoon garlic salt, Lawry’s

½ teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

Meat and Vegetable Layer

2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 lb lean ground beef ( I used ground turkey)

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper

¼ teaspoon garlic salt, Lawry’s

1 15 oz can green beans, drained

1 15 oz can mixed veggies, drained

26 oz can Muir Glen Fire Roasted Tomatoes, pureed in food processor or blender (I was running short on time and did not process these and it turned out just fine)

2 Cups shredded cheddar cheese


1. Place potatoes in a large pot of water and boil for 10-12 minutes or until fork tender. Drain then place into a stand or electric mixer. Beat until well mashed then add remaining potato ingredients until well combined. Set aside.

2. Heat olive oil into a large skillet over medium heat. Saute onion until softened, about 5 minutes. Add ground beef, salt, pepper and garlic salt; cook until browned and crumbled. Stir in beans, vegetables and pureed tomatoes. Pour meat mixture into a 9x13 inch baking dish or individual size baking dishes. Top with mashed potatoes then sprinkle with cheddar cheese. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until cheese is melted. For crispy cheese topping bake uncovered, for oozing cheese, cover with foil after 15 minutes of baking. Enjoy!

8 servings

Note: This isn't exactly the healthiest of dishes. Make it lighter by using skim milk, using Neufchatel cheese or low fat sour cream instead of the mozzarella in the potatoes (or cutting out the cheese completely) and by cutting down on the amount of cheddar cheese in the topping (or again, you could cut it out completely). I also substituted ground turkey instead of ground beef. Even with these changes, I still think it'd taste great!

I'll return soon with more tasty recipes! I haven't been cooking very much since lately I've been sick (today I have laryngitis) and we've been very busy working on the house so I have been making really simple dinners. However, I will be posting my Daring Bakers Challenge soon and I am thinking of trying out a pretty amazing looking Tyler Florence chili recipe for Super Bowl Sunday. Stay tuned! Have a great week, everyone!