Friday, April 11, 2014

Cottage Pie

What does one do when she has not ONE but TWO beef cows purchased, wrapped and frozen in not ONE but TWO commercial size freezers? (That is a whole other story as to how we ended up with two beef cows in such a short period of time)

I began scanning pinterest and many of my favorite blogs searching for new and creative ways to use ground beef.  Some of our family favorites are Shepherd's Pie, Sloppy Joe's, Enchiladas and of course Cheeseburgers.  But, when the kids began saying, "hamburger again," I realized it was time for intervention.

I actually stumbled across this blog, Farmstead Cookery, late one night, which spoke to my more mindful desire to cook from scratch, and eat wholesome, healthy organic meals all from what we've grown or obtained from local sources.

The General Manager is a meat and potato man and must have meat with every meal.   I gave up years ago trying to fix meatless meals to stretch our food budget, so now I just try to find casseroles or one dish meals that include either chicken or beef that feed a family of seven.

The first recipe that caught my eye that night was Cottage Pie. It had all the essential elements, meat, potatoes and lots of CHEESE!  It won rave reviews by everyone in the family and was unanimously declared, "A Keeper."

I even had a helper when it came time to making the mashed potatoes.  Coupled with a jar of home grown green beans made for a wonderful meal.
Cottage Pie
  • 3 T. olive oil or tallow
  • 2 garlic cloves, mashed
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1 t. fresh thyme leaves
  • ½ c. red wine
  • 1 c. beef stock, divided
  • 1 t. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 T. tomato paste
  • 2 T. butter, melted
  • 4 T. flour
  • salt & pepper
  • 3 lb. potatoes, chopped
  • 1 c. milk, boiling
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 T. butter
  • 1 T. chives, chopped
  • ¼ c. Parmigiano Reggiano
  • ¼ c. cheddar cheese, grated
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Warm up the fat in skillet.
  3. Add the onion and sauté over medium heat until it softens & begins to slightly brown.
  4. Add in the garlic for and cook for another minute until it’s fragrant.
  5. Increase the heat and add the beef and thyme, browning..
  6. Add the wine, ¾ stock, Worcestershire, & tomato paste.
  7. Simmer for 10 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, boil the chopped potatoes until fork tender (time varies depending on how small you chopped them.)
  9. Drain and mash the potatoes.
  10. Bring the milk to a boil in a small saucepan and add to the mash while they are still hot.
  11. Season, adding the butter & chives.
  12. Make a thick roux by whisking 4 T. flour into 2 T. butter, cooking over low for 2 minutes.
  13. Bring rest of the stock (¼ c.) to a boil and whisk in enough roux to thicken (should still be a little juicy).
  14. Stir into beef and adjust your seasonings to taste.
  15. Spoon the saucy beef into a large dish. (I used a 10″ cast iron skillet.)
  16. Spread mashed potatoes on top.
  17. Sprinkle with cheeses.
  18. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes until the top is golden & slightly crispy.
Enjoy your weekend!