Recipe 19: Venison Cottage Pie
Day 28: 26 Feb 2018
Book: Mary Berry Everyday, pg 115
The first proper meal recipe of the challenge. While I was going through the recipes thoroughly I realised how hard it would be to try to make these all vegetarian. So I decided to take an easy start, venison cottage pie using Quorn mince rather than venison and leaving out the bacon.
I started off frying onion, rosemary and carrots in some oil for a few minutes, adding in the Quorn mince and frying for another 2 minutes to brown the mince. Once the mince had browned I sprinkled in the flour and cooked the mixture for a minute stirring continuously.
Next, I gradually stirred in red wine and boiled for a few minutes to reduce the wine by half. Then I added vegetable stock (instead of beef stock) and brought the pan back to boil and seasoned with salt and pepper. After 10 minutes I brought the pan to a simmer for about 30 minutes.
Once the mince was done I transferred it to an ovenproof dish, set it aside to cool and got started on the potatoes. Cooked in salted water until tender, drained, added salt, pepper, butter and a splash of milk and mashed until smooth.
The trick with this dish is to allow the mince to cool before putting the mash on top. Warm mince will make it difficult to spread the mash properly, it will mix in with the mince. In addition, warm mash spreads easier than cold mash. So you want warm mash and cold mince.
Lastly, I baked the cottage pie in the oven at 200 for about half an hour and we had it for dinner with a side of salad.
The pie had a strange taste to it, I think it must have been due to the Quorn, I’ve never used it before so I’m not sure what it actually tastes like. This meal took a good two hours to bring together which is honestly too much for me after work – at the weekend it’s much more reasonable. I’m more of a quick weekday meal kinda gal. Salads, wraps, stuffed roast veg etc.
Will I make it again? And what will I do differently next time?
Growing up cottage pie was one of my absolute favourites, I think I might make this again but next time I’ll try using lentils and maybe a little less rosemary.
That makes it 19 recipes down, and 319 to go.