Delia Smith Cottage Pie Recipe

Delia Smith Cottage Pie Recipe
Yields: 1 Serving Difficulty: Easy Prep Time: 20 Mins Cook Time: 1 Hr 20 Mins Total Time: 1 Hr 40 Mins

Delia Smith Cottage Pie is a heartwarming and comforting dish, perfect for anyone who appreciates home-cooked meals with a touch of homely charm. This recipe, crafted by the much-loved Delia Smith, is a classic take on the traditional cottage pie, featuring tender, savory minced meat topped with a layer of creamy, golden mashed potatoes. Known for her ability to transform simple ingredients into delightful meals, Delia Smith ensures this cottage pie is as effortless to prepare as it is satisfying to savor.

In this article, I will show you how to make Delia Smith’s cottage pie recipe, with a complete step-by-step guide and tips for success. You will learn how to prepare the meat filling, the potato topping, and the cheese and herb crust.

So, are you ready to make the ultimate cottage pie?

Let’s get started!

What is Delia SmithCottage Pie Recipe?

Delia Smith Cottage Pie is a delicious and comforting dish that consists of minced beef cooked in a rich gravy, topped with mashed potatoes and cheese, and baked until golden and bubbly. It is a classic British dish that is easy to make and perfect for cold winter nights. Delia Smith is one of the most famous and respected chefs in the UK, and her recipe for cottage pie is simple, reliable, and delicious.

Perfect for feeding a family or a small group, this cottage pie is an excellent choice for a cozy weeknight dinner or a casual weekend meal. With its wholesome ingredients and straightforward preparation, Delia Smith’s Cottage Pie stands as a testament to the joys of simple, yet delicious, home cooking.

Delia Smith Cottage Pie

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Why You Love This Recipe 💕

You will love this recipe because:

  • Satisfying and Wholesome: The combination of tender meat, creamy potatoes, and a cheesy crust creates a fulfilling and comforting dish.
  • Easy to Prepare: The recipe involves straightforward steps and simple ingredients, making it accessible for any home cook.
  • Adaptable: It offers flexibility with various ingredient substitutions and variations to cater to different tastes and dietary needs.
  • Convenient for Storage: The dish is suitable for freezing, making it an excellent make-ahead meal option.

Ingredients Needed to Make Delia Smith Cottage Pie

To make Delia Smith’s cottage pie recipe, you will need the following ingredients:

For the double mince mixture

  • 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 lb (450 g) of lean minced beef
  • 1 teaspoon of dried mixed herbs
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons of plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons of mushroom ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pint (570 ml) of water

For the topping

  • 1 lb (450 g) of potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 4 tablespoons of natural yoghurt
  • 1 oz (25 g) of butter
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 2 oz (50 g) of grated Cheddar cheese
  • 1 teaspoon of dried mixed herbs

Useful Equipment

To make Delia Smith’s cottage pie recipe, you will need the following equipment:

  • A medium-sized saucepan
  • A large frying pan or skillet
  • A measuring jug
  • A measuring spoon
  • A wooden spoon
  • A sharp knife
  • A chopping board
  • A potato masher
  • A 5-inch (13 cm) ramekin or small pie dish
  • A cheese grater
  • A fork
  • An oven
  • A grill or broiler

Instructions to Make Delia Smith Cottage Pie Recipe

Here are the instructions for making Delia Smith’s cottage pie recipe, with a complete step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Preheat the oven and grill

Before you start cooking, you need to preheat the oven and the grill (or broiler). Set the oven to gas mark 6 (400°F, 200°C) and the grill to high. This will ensure that the cottage pie cooks evenly and gets a nice golden crust.

Step 2: Cook the onion and carrot

Next, you need to cook the onion and carrot in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Heat the oil in the saucepan, then add the onion and carrot and cook them for about 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are soft and slightly browned at the edges. This will add flavor and texture to the meat filling. 🥕

Step 3: Brown the meat

Then, you need to brown the meat in a large frying pan or skillet over high heat. Transfer the onion and carrot to a plate with a slotted spoon, leaving the oil in the saucepan. Add the minced beef to the frying pan and cook it for about 10 minutes, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until it is brown and toasted at the edges. Drain off the excess fat that comes out of the meat, then season it with salt, pepper, and dried mixed herbs. This will make the meat filling more savory and aromatic. 🥩

Step 4: Make the gravy

Now, you need to make the gravy that will bind the meat filling together. Sprinkle the flour over the meat and stir it well to coat it. Then, mix the mushroom ketchup and Worcestershire sauce with the water in a measuring jug and pour it over the meat, stirring as you do so. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer it for 30 minutes, uncovered, until it is thick and glossy. This will create a rich and flavorful gravy that will keep the meat moist and tender. 🍲

Step 5: Boil the potatoes

While the meat is simmering, you need to boil the potatoes for the topping. Put the potatoes in a large pot of salted water and bring it to a boil. Cook the potatoes for about 15 minutes, or until they are fork-tender. Then, drain them and return them to the pot. This will prepare the potatoes for mashing. 🥔

Step 6: Mash the potatoes

Next, you need to mash the potatoes for the topping. Add the yoghurt and butter to the potatoes and mash them with a potato masher until they are smooth and creamy. Season them with salt and pepper to taste. This will make the potato topping more light and fluffy. 🍶

Step 7: Assemble the cottage pie

Then, you need to assemble the cottage pie in a 5-inch (13 cm) ramekin or small pie dish. Spoon half of the meat mixture into the dish and spread it evenly. Then, spoon the mashed potato mixture over the meat and level it off with a fork. This will form the base and the topping of the cottage pie. 🥧

Step 8: Sprinkle the cheese and herbs

Now, you need to sprinkle the cheese and herbs over the potato topping. Combine the grated cheese and the dried mixed herbs in a small bowl and sprinkle them evenly over the surface of the potato. This will add more flavor and texture to the cottage pie. 🧀

Step 9: Bake and grill the cottage pie

Finally, you need to bake and grill the cottage pie until it is golden and bubbly. Put the dish in the oven and bake it for 25 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and the filling is bubbling. Then, transfer the dish to the grill and grill it for 5 minutes, or until the cheese is brown and crisp. This will give the cottage pie a nice crust and a beautiful color. 😍

Step 10: Enjoy your cottage pie

Congratulations, you have made Delia Smith’s cottage pie recipe! Enjoy your delicious and comforting meal, and don’t forget to share it with your friends and family. You can serve the cottage pie with some green peas, carrots, or salad on the side, or just enjoy it on its own. Bon appétit! 🍽️

Easy Delia Smith Cottage Pie Recipe

🍽️What Do I Serve With Delia Smith Cottage Pie?

Delia Smith’s Cottage Pie is a dish that stands out on its own, but pairing it with the right sides can enhance your dining experience.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Steamed Green Peas and Carrots: Add a pop of color and a fresh element to balance the richness of the pie.
  • Crisp Green Salad: A light salad with a vinaigrette dressing can offer a refreshing contrast.
  • Warm, Crusty Bread: Ideal for soaking up the savory gravy, adding a satisfying texture to your meal.
  • Cranberry Sauce: Introduces a subtle sweetness, complementing the deep flavors of the cottage pie.

Delia Smith Cottage Pie Recipe

🌟Pro Tips to Make Perfect Delia Smith Cottage Pie

To ensure your Delia Smith Cottage Pie is as delightful as intended, consider these expert tips:

  • Lean Minced Beef: Choose lean beef and drain excess fat after browning for a healthier, less greasy filling.
  • Flavorful Gravy: Enhance the gravy by using mushroom ketchup and Worcestershire sauce, simmering it for 30 minutes to deepen the flavors.
  • Light and Fluffy Mashed Potatoes: Use natural yoghurt in the mashed potatoes, avoiding milk to keep them light and fluffy.
  • Crispy, Cheesy Topping: A mix of grated Cheddar cheese and dried herbs, grilled for a few minutes, creates a perfect crispy crust.

🌈Variations of Delia Smith Cottage Pie

Delia Smith’s Cottage Pie is a versatile recipe that can be adapted in various ways:

  • Shepherd’s Pie with Lamb: Replace beef mince with lamb for a traditional twist.
  • Poultry Pie with Chicken or Turkey Mince: A lighter version that is still rich in flavor.
  • Vegetarian Pie with Plant-Based Options: Use vegetable mince or lentils for a meat-free alternative.
  • Sweet Potato Pie Variation: Swap in sweet potatoes for a unique flavor and color.
  • Creamier Potato Topping: Substitute yoghurt with cream cheese or sour cream for a richer taste.

🥡How do I store Delia Smith Cottage Pie Leftovers?

If you have any leftovers of Delia Smith Cottage Pie, you can store them in the following ways:

In the fridge

  • Let the cottage pie cool completely, then cover it with foil or plastic wrap, or transfer it to an airtight container.
  • Store it in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • Reheat it in the oven or microwave before serving.

In the freezer

  • Let the cottage pie cool completely, then cut it into portions and wrap each portion with foil or plastic wrap, or transfer them to freezer-safe containers or bags.
  • Label and date the containers or bags, and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Thaw them in the fridge overnight, then reheat them in the oven or microwave before serving.

How do I reheat Delia Smith Cottage Pie Leftovers?

If you want to reheat Delia Smith Cottage Pie leftovers, you can do it in the following ways:

In the oven

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan) or gas mark 4.
  • Place the cottage pie in an ovenproof dish and cover it with foil.
  • Bake it for 25 to 30 minutes, or until it is hot and bubbly.
  • Remove the foil and grill it for 5 minutes, or until the cheese is brown and crisp.

In the microwave

  • Place the cottage pie in a microwave-safe dish and cover it with a lid or a damp paper towel.
  • Microwave it on high for 5 to 10 minutes, or until it is hot and bubbly, stirring halfway through.
  • Sprinkle some cheese on top and microwave it for another minute, or until the cheese is melted.

FAQs

What is the difference between cottage pie and shepherd’s pie?

Cottage pie and shepherd’s pie are very similar dishes, but the main difference is the type of meat used. Cottage pie uses minced beef, while shepherd’s pie uses minced lamb. Both pies are topped with mashed potatoes and cheese, and baked until golden and bubbly. 🥧

How do I make the gravy for the cottage pie more rich and flavorful?

One of the secrets to making a delicious gravy for the cottage pie is to use mushroom ketchup and Worcestershire sauce. These two ingredients add a lot of umami and depth to the gravy and complement the meat and vegetables well. You can also simmer the gravy for 30 minutes, uncovered, to reduce it and make it thicker and glossier. 🍲

How do I make the potato topping for the cottage pie more light and fluffy?

To make the potato topping for the cottage pie more light and fluffy, you can use natural yoghurt instead of milk or cream. Yoghurt adds a tangy and creamy flavor to the potatoes and also helps them to rise and brown in the oven. You can also use a potato masher or a ricer to mash the potatoes and avoid overmixing them. 🍶

How do I prevent the cottage pie from being too dry or too runny?

To prevent the cottage pie from being too dry or too runny, you need to adjust the amount of liquid and flour in the meat filling. If the filling is too dry, you can add more water or stock to make it more moist and juicy. If the filling is too runny, you can add more flour to thicken it and absorb the excess liquid. You can also drain off the fat that comes out of the meat after browning it, to prevent it from making the filling greasy.

Nutrition value per serving:

  • Calories: 483 kcal
  • Protein: 32.5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 51 g (of which 16.5 g sugars)
  • Fat: 14 g (of which 6 g saturates)
  • Fiber: 12 g
  • Salt: 1.2 g

Final Words

Delia Smith’s cottage pie recipe is a classic and delicious way to enjoy a hearty and comforting meal. It is easy to make, with only a few ingredients and steps, and it is versatile and adaptable, with many variations and substitutions you can try. It is also freezer-friendly and leftover-friendly, so you can make it ahead and enjoy it later. Whether you serve it with some green peas, carrots, or salad on the side, or just enjoy it on its own, you will love this recipe for its tender meat, creamy potatoes, and cheesy crust. Bon appétit! 🍽️

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