This recipe for traditional favourite Shepherd’s Pie is an all-time classic, and an easy way to improve your cooking skills.
For a dish that will serve 4 - 6 people, you will need:
* Around a pound and a half of lean mince. I like to use organic - it’s a little more expensive but worth it.
* 3-4 large potatoes, mashed
* 2 grated carrots
* 1 large onion, roughly chopped
* A good splash of rapeseed oil
* Tablespoon of freshly chopped parsley
* Black Pepper
*Little pinch of paprika
* Pint of beef stock
* Cup of frozen peas
* Tablespoon of flour
* Pinchof fresh or dried thyme
In a thick-bottomed pot, add your oil, heat and then add your minced beef. Brown well then drain of the excess oil and fat. Add your garlic onion, paprika and mix well. Next add your flour mix well and then return to the heat.
Add your stock slowly, then add your carrots. Bring to the boil, then simmer for around 15 - 20 minutes before adding your peas.
Correct the seasoning, and place the mixture into a good oven-proof dish. Leave to cool for an hour at least - though overnight is better if possible as this helps with the flavour.
Add the mashed potato topping using a piping bag with a large star nozzle if you have one - if not, just use a fork to give the topping a decorative touch. Bake in a moderate oven on the top shelf until the potato browns.
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Chef Chris Sandford writes the Chef’s Corner column every week in the Leinster Leader