This dish I have been working on is something of an east-west fusion in that it incorporates a traditional Indian dish known as ‘Keema Saag’ in the basic form of the more well-known Shepherd’s Pie. Basically, ‘Keema’ is minced (ground) meat, while ‘Saag’ refers to a whole range of greens, with spinach often being used in many western renditions of Indian dishes. Here I have used both Kale and Swiss Chard with the result that you get a Shepherd’s Pie with the added spiciness of a curry, combined with a good way of getting some greens into your diet… Continue reading “Keema Pie”
Back in April, I posted a recipe for a traditional Shepherd’s Pie using some lovely minced lamb leftover from a Sunday Roast. These days, what most people call Shepherd’s Pie is usually made using ground beef but, to be strictly accurate, this sort of preparation is more properly called ‘Cottage Pie’. As with the more traditional shepherd’s dish, a Cottage Pie is essentially ground meat baked casserole style with a topping of mashed potatoes but, again like the lamb variety, there are countless variations.
Onions are a fairly standard addition but, beyond that, carrots, peas and tomatoes are often included, and some even add cheese to the topping (although this is a variation I really don’t care for). Years ago, my mother came up with a modification that I have long since adopted and which uses the unusual addition applesauce to enrich the mix with a lovely tangy sweetness. This is how I will be preparing the dish for this post… Continue reading “Comfort Food: Cottage Pie”
Lamb is not all that popular amongst most Canadians but when I was a kid growing up in England roast lamb was a very popular Sunday dinner. In many households, the main joint would invariably be followed, sometime later in the week, by that old leftovers stand-by, Shepherd’s pie.
Shepherd’s Pie has always been a mainstay of institutional cooking – school cafeterias and the like – and most people associate it with a composite of ground beef, various vegetables and potato. Strictly speaking though, versions with beef are actually Cottage pies whereas a true Shepherd’s pie, as the name suggests, should contain lamb… generally ground cooked lamb that is leftover from a roast.
The basic pie consists simply of ground meat (usually with added onion) baked under a topping of mashed potato. There are endless permutations on the theme, however, involving a whole host of diverse additions. Peas are quite common; as are carrots, and celery, and quite a few recipes add cheese to the potatoes. My mother used to make a version with applesauce in the meat mix and I love it this way, especially with corn niblets added. For this current, experiment, however, I want to go back to the basics and make a very traditional, simple pie… Continue reading “Experiment: Shepherd’s Pie”