Classic Cottage Pie

  November 14, 2021   Read time 1 min
Classic Cottage Pie
Cottage pie is one of the classic dishes in a British kitchen. It is known for being a hearty, satisfying, and warming food, and although often thought of as a winter dish, it is perfect any time of year.


  • 2 pounds baking potatoes (peeled and quartered)
  • 6 tablespoons milk
  • 4 ounces butter (cubed)
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tablespoon lard (or drippings)
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup chopped carrot
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 2 cups ground beef
  • 2 cups beef stock (divided)
  • 2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley (finely chopped)
  • Optional: 1 cup chopped white mushrooms
  • Salt to taste
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon butter


# Put the potatoes in a pan and cover with boiling water. Place over high heat and boil gently until soft, about 15 minutes. Drain the potatoes.

# Add the milk and butter to the pan. Heat over medium-low heat until the butter melts.

# Add the potatoes back to the pan and mash. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

# Melt the lard or drippings in a large, deep ovenproof skillet or Dutch oven. Add the onion and carrot and sauté for 5 minutes.

# Add the garlic and cook for another minute, making sure not to let it burn.

# Add the ground beef and roughly a 1/4 of the beef stock. Cook, stirring constantly until all of the meat is browned.

# Add the remaining stock, the parsley, mushrooms (if using), and salt and pepper to taste. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook for 15 minutes.

# Heat the oven to 375 F/190 C/Gas Mark 5. In a small bowl, mash the flour into the butter to form a paste.

# Add some of the paste in small pieces to the ground meat mixture, stirring until all of the flour has dissolved.

# Repeat until all of the paste is used up. The sauce should thicken slightly.

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