This is one of my favourite recipes, especially when I have friends coming round. It is super easy and super practical as I can make it in advance. I just have to prepare it and then put it in the oven when my guests have arrived. I know this is not exactly a cottage pie but I think my version is nice because the flavour is a little bit more subtle. It will probably seem a bit a weird to use sweet potatoes…but trust me, the mix between potatoes, sweet potatoes and feta is de-li-cious! Even if you don’t like sweet potatoes, it will make you change your mind! You try it and you’ll see! 😉
In my ingredients, I have used dairy produce but it is possible to do it with lactose-free ingredients so no worries for those of you who have a sensitive tummy (like me!).
- 1 kg of potatoes (the kind of potatoes you use to do mash)
- 2 medium sized sweet potatoes
- a dash of milk (use lactose-free milk if needed)
- 1 teaspoon of butter (or margarine)…just for the taste
- 100 g feta cheese
- 1 onion (or 1 shallot)
- 1 big clove of garlic
- 1 carrot
- a glug of olive oil
- 3-4 medium sized mushrooms
- 300 g minced beef or pork (or even chicken if you prefer. It is also possible to add more meat if needed)
- a splash of red wine (the stronger the wine the stronger the flavour…up to you!)
- half a jar of tomato sauce (like tomato passata or tinned tomatoes. It would be about 200 g)
- 1 heaped teaspoon of flour
- a splash of cream (for a dairy-free recipe, replace it with soya cream, lactose-free cream or coconut milk)
- a pinch of salt, pepper, oregano, paprika and basil
- a handful of grated cheese (gruyère or cheddar)
1. Preheat your oven to 200°C. Peel all the potatoes (sweet potatoes and normal potatoes) and cook them until very tender. Just so you know, sweet potatoes take more time to cook than the normal ones so you should either make sure you cut the sweet ones a bit smaller or just cook them in different pans.
2. In the meantime, peel the onion, crush the garlic and cut the carrot (small squares) and put it all in a frying pan with a bit of olive oil. Once the carrot starts to soften, add the sliced mushrooms. A minute later, add the meat and let it cook for a few minutes (until the meat browns). Add a pinch of salt, pepper, oregano, paprika and basil as well as a splash of wine and let it all reduce a bit. Your sauce shouldn’t be too liquid. Stir in the tomato juice and a splash of cream (to make it taste less acid). Let it cook for a few minutes and add a teaspoon of flour to thicken the whole sauce. Make sure it is not too thick. If this is the case, add a bit more tomato sauce. Put it in your dish and leave it on the side.
3. When the potatoes are ready, mash them and add a dash of milk, a teaspoon of butter and season with salt and pepper to taste. Make sure you don’t put too much salt as the feta is already rather strong and will add more flavour. When it is all mashed, add your feta. Just cut it into small squares either with a knife or crumble it in with your hands. Put a good spoonful of the mixture in a piping bag (optional, you could also just spread it over the meat with a spoon) and start decorating your dish (be creative!). Add a bit of grated cheese on top.
4. Put in the oven for about 40 minutes or until the cheese has melted and is golden brown. Serve it with a salad of your choice and enjoy! 😉