One of my favourite winter meals is a pie. It’s full of vegetables and usually has a nice crisp pastry topping. But there’s something even more warming on a cold winter’s night and that’s a pie with a creamy, light and fluffy potato layer on top.
It’s starting to cool down and so the focus turns to warming foods. Foods that can be cooked in the oven. The heat fills the home and adds to the warmth of a winter’s evening. The sky becomes darker as you’re leaving work and all you want to do is get home and snuggle up on the lounge. You want an appetising meal that will fill your belly without filling your hips.
This mushroom and lentil shepherd’s pie does just the trick. There are a few steps and it’s not a one pot dish. But make a large enough batch and you could be enjoying this meal for a couple of dinners, or have the left overs for lunch the next day.
Of course there are mushrooms and lentils in this lentil shepherd’s pie, but there are also lots of veggies and it has a cheesy flavour from the savoury yeast flakes. It gets its richness from a touch of flour and some tamari sauce.
I first made this when I was planning on making a tofu and veg pie. But I didn’t have any tofu and I didn’t have any pastry for the top. So I looked around the kitchen to see what I did have. And I had lots of potato, and lots of mushrooms, and some lentils. And so the mushroom and lentil shepherd’s pie was born.
I pre-cook lots of beans and lentils. First soak them overnight and then drain and rinse. Put them in a saucepan with boiling water and cook for around half an hour. Drain and rinse again and then cook again. Drain and rinse and then they are ready. It seems like a lot of work but make a big batch and then freeze them in one cup sizes. That way there’ll always be some in the freezer ready to go.
If you don’t have any pre-cooked and ready. Grab a can of lentils. Just make sure you drain and rinse them well before adding them to the pie.
I don’t know any shepherd’s but I’m sure they would love their very own mushroom and lentil shepherd’s pie.
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