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John and Lisa's Weekend Kitchen

Family favourites: Cottage pie with stuffed aubergines

Perfect for lazy Sundays, this warming cottage pie with stuffed aubergines is not only delicious, but perfect to share with the whole family.

Ingredients

Cottage pie mince1kg beef mince, but not too fine or fatty2 medium onions3 large carrots finely chopped4 sticks celery finely chopped2 leeks finely chopped2 cloves garlic½ bunch thyme½ bunch rosemary2 bay leafsMarmite500mls beef stockA splash of Worcestershire sauceA squidge of brown sauceA couple of teaspoons of gravy granules

Topping1kg potatoes cut into large cubes and boiledGreens of your choice (to serve)Mince alternativesStuffed aubergines4-6 auberginesOlive oilBreadcrumbsParmesanParsleyBologneseTin of tomatoes or tomatoItalian herbs

Method

  • In a big heavy pan, start to cook the vegetables. Once they smell like they are frying add a good amount of salt and pepper and cook for another few minutes.

  • Add the mince and fry for about 10 minutes or until nice and brown. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

  • Tie the herbs together with some string and drop into the pot (this way you can remove the herbs at the end and won’t have any left floating in your pie.

  • Pour in the stock, add the bay leaves and simmer for 1 hour. Add some Bisto gravy granules to thicken if needed.

  • Take the pot from the heat and add the marmite, Worcestershire and brown sauce. Taste and season again if needed.

  • Pour the filling into individual pie tins or one big pie dish if you prefer.

  • For the topping, cut the potatoes into quarters and boil in salted water. Once cooked, drain and give them a shake with a good splash of olive oil and salt and pepper, until they are nice and fluffy.

  • Drop onto the tops of your individual pies (or one large pie) and bake at 180c for 25 - 30 mins (45 minutes to an hour if making one large portion) until the potatoes are lovely and roasted.

  • Serve with buttered greens.

Mince alternativesStuffed auberginesSlice aubergines in half and score the flesh inside.Drizzle with olive oil and season.Roast for about 20 minutes in an oven at 200c.Once baked, scoop out the middles and combine in a bowl with your mince.Add back into the aubergine skins and top with a mix of fresh breadcrumbs, parmesan & parsley.

BologneseAdd a tin of tomatoes or tomato puree to your sauce, plus some Italian herbs.

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John and Lisa's Weekend Kitchen