I’ve been aware that I haven’t posted many non-meat recipes for my vegetarian readers – sorry! Hopefully this makes up for it.
The great thing about this version of a cottage pie is that you really don’t realise that there is no meat in it. That makes it good for families where maybe everyone is not a vegetarian.
The original recipe came from the BBC Good Food website, but I have added in some more green vegetables and also some mushrooms. You could change the vegetables (except the carrots) to suit whatever you have to hand.
The carrots are the main vegetable, and they do remain slightly crunchy with this cooking time. That gives some nice texture to the dish, but if you don’t like any crunch to your carrots simply give them a bit more cooking time.
Ingredients – serves 4:
- 1 tbsp vegetable or olive oil, for cooking
- 1 onion, halved and thinly sliced
- 2 large carrots, cut into small cubes
- 2 sprigs thyme, leaves stripped (or you could just use mixed dried herbs)
- 200ml/7fl oz red wine
- 400g/14oz can diced tomatoes
- 2 vegetable stock cubes
- 150g/5oz button mushrooms, roughly chopped
- 1 small green capsicum, diced
- 3 leaves silverbeet, stems removed and shredded (I used rainbow silverbeet)
- 400g/14oz can green or brown lentils (I used brown), drained and rinsed
- 1kg/2lb sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
- 25g/1oz butter
- grated cheese, to top
- Heat the oil in a large, deep frying pan and cook the onion until it starts to colour.
- Add the carrots and the thyme (or dried herbs) and fry off for a minute.
- Pour in the wine, 150ml/5fl oz water and the can of tomatoes. Crumble over the stock cubes then stir to combine all the ingredients.
- Bring to the boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, boil the sweet potatoes in a large pan of water for 15 minutes, or until tender. Drain.
- Heat the oven to 190C/170C fan forced/370F.
- Add the mushrooms, silverbeet and capsicum to the frying pan and stir to combine. Bring back to the boil and cook for 2 minutes.
- Pour in the drained lentils and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the carrots are to your preferred texture.
- Put the vegetable mixture into an ovenproof dish and spread into an even layer.
- Mash the sweet potato with the butter, then carefully spread over the top of the vegetable mix in the dish.
- Sprinkle over the grated cheese.
- Cook for 20 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and golden.
- Remove from the oven and leave for at least 5 minutes to cool slightly.
- Serve and enjoy!