Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cottage Pie

I would like to start by saying for the past few weeks I have been looking for a mandolin slicer. But I have not been able to find one, or maybe find one I like. So the other day my Mom & Dad came over to visit and they gave me a mandolin slicer they found while they were out shopping. How sweet of them to find a tool I have been looking for. Now no more looking and lets get slicing.

Last months issue of Everyday Food Magazine had a Cottage Pie on the cover. This very beautiful Pie in a casserole dish with thinly sliced potatoes as the "top crust." All I wanted to do was make this beautiful dish. After receiving the mandolin slicer I knew this was the first dish I was going to make with this new kitchen tool.

I am such a fan of comfort food and things that make you feel good inside and out. They make the house smell wonderful in the winter and warm the soul of all those who pop in for a visit unexpectedly during the winter.

This dish has other advantages in that you can use what you have in your fridge to make it. Most of these ingredients can be exchanged for something different and it can still be considered a Cottage Pie. The original way to make Cottage Pie is to use Lamb but since Turkey day was just upon us I substituted Turkey for the Lamb and it was such a yummy idea.

This is what I did ...
3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
1 large onion, diced
2 large carrots, sliced
coarse salt & pepper
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
2 1/2 cups of minced turkey (both dark and white meat)
2 teaspoons of dried thyme
1 cup larger beer
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3/4 cup frozen peas
2 Yukon gold potatoes, thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high. Add onion and carrots and cook, stirring often, until onion is soft, 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and stir in tomato paste. Add meat and cook, until almost cooked through, 3 minutes. Add thyme and beer and bring to a boil. Cook, stirring frequently, until slightly reduced, 2 minutes. Sprinkle flour over mixture and stir to combine. Add 1 cup water and cook until mixture thickens, about 2 minutes. Stir in peas and season with salt and pepper.
Transfer mixture to a casserole like baking dish. Top with sliced potatoes, overlapping slices. Season potatoes with salt and pepper and drizzle with 2 tablespoons butter. Bake until potatoes are browned around edges and tender when pierced with a knife, 40 to 45 minutes. Then put in broiler for 5-10 minutes to crisp up the edges of the potatoes.

Let sit for 10 minutes to "settle and rest" before serving.

My husband thought this dish was so yummy he cannot wait for me to make it again. We although thought the next time we make it was are going to add 3/4 cup of frozen corn to add another level of sweetness.

As you can see there is so much you can do with this recipe from different meats you can use to veggies that can go in it makes it a frugal find, for what you have in your fridge you can use and it will come out just as yummy. It is so easy and looks so nice when finished it can even make a great casual dinner for you and another couple for a weeknight dinner


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