One of my students has a son who’s about to move to America. A discussion about Italians abroad led us somehow to talking about Giovanni Trapattoni and his experiences in Ireland. Then we went on to talk about Fabio Capello and his famous declaration in 2009 “I get to try typical English dishes like shepherd’s pie which is a kind of ragu with potatoes,” How could we resist with keen cooks in the class, we had to try this ragu with potatoes!
We made cottage pie and not shepherd’s pie.
Here are the instructions for Cottage Pie. I asked do you know the difference between cottage pie and shepherd’s pie.
Shepherd’s pie was traditionally made with minced lamb while cottage pie was made with minced beef.
Here are the ingredients (courtesy of Delia Smith) to help you:
|12 oz (350 g) lean minced beef|
|1 large onion, roughly chopped|
|1 medium carrot, finely chopped|
|1 tablespoon olive oil|
|1 level teaspoon mixed herbs, fresh or dried|
|1 level tablespoon flour|
|salt and freshly milled black pepper|
|For the cottage-pie topping:|
|6-7 oz (175-200 g) potatoes|
|a knob of butter|
|1½ oz (40 g) grated cheese|
|½ level teaspoon mixed herbs, fresh or dried|
Chop the onions
Chop the carrots
Divide the minced meat into batches
Gently heat the olive oil and add the minced meat
Toss the meat around the pan until it is nicely browned
Once the meat is browned remove it from the pan
Fry the onions and add the carrots
Once the vegetables are cooked set them aside
Add flour to the cooked minced meat to soak up the juices then add the vegetables, salt and herbs to the pot
Keep everything warm while you make the mashed potatoes
Arrange the minced meat on the bottom of a lightly buttered casserole dish with mashed potaotes on top. Don’t forget to grate some cheese on top for a tasty crust!
Voila! Serve piping hot preferably with some green vegetables and a glass of good red wine!
Look at the British Council site
For more about food in England
And for a shepherd’s pie recipe with one of my cooking heroes Gordon Ramsay