Shepherd’s, Cottage Pie

(English-Irish meat pie with mashed potato topping)

Shepherd’s pie is a traditional and satisfying British and Irish meal of meat and vegetables topped with creamy mashed potatoes and baked until bubbling and browned. The dish is called “shepherd’s pie” when made with ground lamb. Use ground beef and it becomes “cottage pie.”

4 to 6 servings


Mashed Potato Topping

Ground Meat Filling


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and add a big pinch of salt and cool water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium-high flame, then reduce heat to medium and continue at a light boil until the potatoes are cooked through, 15 minutes or so.
  2. Drain the potatoes and set them aside to steam dry a bit. Then add the milk and mash to mix the milk in. Then add the butter, salt and pepper and continue mashing until smooth. Set aside.
  3. Heat the oil in a large saute pan over medium-high flame. Add the onion and saute until translucent, then add the ground lamb or beef and saute, breaking up large pieces, until it the meat is cooked through. Drain off any excess fat, and then stir in the tomato paste and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes. Finally, stir in the carrots, peas and thyme. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for another 5 to 7 minutes.
  4. Stir the stock or water and flour together to make a slurry with no lumps. Stir the slurry into the meat and vegetables and season to taste with salt and pepper. Simmer for another 5 minutes to thicken.
  5. Pour the meat mixture into a 3-quart baking dish. Top the meat with the mashed potatoes and spread them out evenly. Make decorative impressions in the potatoes with the tines of a fork, if you like.
  6. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until heated through and bubbling. Place under a broiler at the end for 1 to 2 minutes to brown the potatoes nicely.

Shepherd’s Pie Variations

from Whats4eats

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