Veggie cottage pie
As Autumn is rolling around, I decided it was time for that staple of British stodge, the cottage pie. Traditionally beef mince with mashed potato on top, but I used Quorn mince. I regret to announce that I have no photos of this fantastic pie, as we ate it all, far too quickly.
You’ll need a casserole dish, or big pie dish, or a medium-sized lasagne dish for this. I used a deep casserole pot without the lid – piling the potatoes up thickly works really well.
Bag of frozen Quorn mince
2 small white onions, 1 red onion
Handful of frozen peas
Stick of celery
Veggie stock pot (I used Tesco’s own but any will do)
Tablespoon of brown miso paste
Tablespoon of gravy granules
Salt + pepper
Lump of butter
Chunk of cheese (as much as you like really)
5 or 6 medium-sized potatoes
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees. Chop up your onions, celery and carrot, nice and small but not teeny-weeny, you want some texture in there. Get a wok or big saucepan, add some oil (sunflower or coconut, it’s all good to be honest as long as it’s light) and fry over a medium heat for about 10 minutes.
Add your frozen peas and the whole bag of Quorn mince. Stir it all about to coat the Quorn in the oil and veggie juices, then add your stock pot to the pan. Leave this for a second while you boil the kettle, then add about 200ml of boiling water to your miso paste. Give it all a stir to dissolve, then add to the wok. Stick your salt and pepper on now too.
Turn the heat down and let this all simmer while you peel the potatoes, then boil these for about 10-15 minutes, or until they’re soft. Turn everything off, drain your spuds and mash them up with the lump of butter. Add as much butter as you fancy – more is better, obviously.
Spoon the mince mixture into the bottom of your casserole dish, pat it down a bit with the spoon and then use a fork to spread the mashed potatoes over the top of it all. Grate your cheese – again, as much or little as you like – and sprinkle this over the top of the potato.
Bung it all in the oven on a middle shelf, for 30 minutes, or until the top of the cheese is all melty and a bit browned. Spoon that bad boy out, and eat either on its own (fine) or with baked beans (also fine).
Booze pairing: For Maximum Brownness, have a nice pint of some kind of porter with this, or a ruby ale. Phwoar.