Thursday, 14 October 2010

Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie Recipe

I was always confused about the difference between shepherd's pie and cottage pie: similar looking, potato-topped pies with some kind of meat underneath. Growing up as a vegetarian, the fact that one is lamb and one is beef was pretty irrelevant to me. Still, for some reason, I've always called my version "Shepherd's Pie."

One of my favourite things about the days drawing in is the excuse to make comfort food... and this is the ultimate comfort food for an autumn evening. It's allergy-friendly, too. Just leave off the cheese if you're feeding vegans.

Vegetarian Shepherd's Pie
Serves 4

1 large onion
3 cloves garlic
1 large carrot
1 large courgette
3 large mushrooms
2 tins lentils
1 tin tomatoes
1tbsp tomato puree
seasonings to taste (I use pepper & chilli)
3 large potatoes
1tbsp butter
100g cheddar cheese (or similar hard cheese)
  1. Finely chop the onion, garlic, carrot & courgette, and sautee in a little oil until the vegetables are soft.

  2. Meanwhile, dice the potatoes and steam or boil until soft.

  3. Roughly chop the mushrooms and add to the onion mixture. Add the lentils, tinned tomato, tomato puree, and seasonings, and simmer for half an hour over a low heat. (I used pre-cooked lentils this time; if you want to use dried lentils, add a little boiling water, and be prepared to cook the mixture for longer.)

  4. When most of the liquid has evaporated, tip the vegetable/lentil mixture into the bottom of a glass casserole dish.

  5. Mash the potatoes with the butter, and arrange on top of the vegetable/lentil mixture. Grate the cheese and sprinkle on top.

  6. Bake at 170°C for 30 minutes.


Lee Ryan said...

I guess I just have a hard time accepting the concept of Shepherd's pie without the meat. Have you ever heard of The Good Shepherd diligently and lovingly watching over his flock of lentils? Oh well; to each their own.

Jacqueline said...

I call mine shepherd's pie too and it is very similar. I am going to try it with lentils and cheese on top. I tend to use soya mince but the lentils look fab :)

Mademoiselle Poirot said...

Sounds fab and I love lentils. However, being a meat eater myself (sorry) I would probably in this case stick with the original... I made some very nice courgette fritters the other day though, so it doesn't have to always be meat ;-) Have a good end of the week, Love from London x

Anjali said...

Corn tastes great in it too!

Bibliomama said...

*snort* flock of lentils. So shepherd's pie is supposed to be lamb? That would make sense, I guess. Now I'm hungry.

cornflakegirl74 said...

THIS IS AWESOME!!! I've been a veggie for 13 years and I'm always looking for comfort foods for this time of year and it's nice to find something other than soup or chilli. I will have to try this, thanks, Rachel!

Judy Harper said...

I've read books where on the menu is Shepherd's pie and wondered how to make as it sounded so good. I'm going to give it a try, in your picture, is that sauage or hotdogs cut up in it?

rockinloubylou said...

This is definitely one of my autumn favourites. I have a recipe from an ancient BBC Vegetarian Good Food magazine that I use which calls for aduki beans. You mash half with a fork and add the other half whole. It adds a really nice texture. Also I occasionally add a wee bit of cooked brown rice. Mmmm!

Chef E said...

I believe shepard's pie originally had lamb, then it converted to beef because many did not like the lamby flavor, I do. However the vegetarian would be a delight!

JadeLD said...

This is one of my favourite meals. I always call the recipe I use sheperds pie even though it's the beef version so really cottage. It tastes great whatever it's called.

I'll have to keep this in mind when we next have our veggie friends over, it's great to have a variety of veggie recipes to choose from.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I've been looking for a vegetarian shepherd's pie recipe. Thanks! I've heard of the veggie variety being called Shepherdess Pie.

Anonymous said...

Lovely recipe! Thanks so much for linking up!

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