While spring is just around the corner, it only just feels like winter is getting started. While the sun has been shining bright, the temperatures here have well and truly plummeted, and I've been snuggled into my cosiest jumpers round-the-clock!
This always make me crave traditional comfort food. Things like apple pies, crumbles, roast dinners. Oh, and Shepherd's Pie.
Earlier this week, my boyfriend and I (I said and I...I mean just him) slow-roasted a shoulder of lamb, and had plenty of leftovers. As soon as I saw that gorgeous, tender meat, I knew exactly what I needed to make: this Leftover Lamb and Lentil Shepherd's Pie With Creamy Cauliflower Mash.
The puy lentils in this dish work a treat at bulking up leftovers, while the creamy cauliflower mash tastes like a dream. Not only does it keep things both Paleo and fairly low-carb, it's also comfort food at its finest. Rich, cheesy and oh-so-delicious!
Honestly, I could eat this up for dinner every single day if I could. It's one of my ultimate death row foods - and I had to seriously ration myself to make it last a few days! As a quick aside, the lamb also works a treat when sandwiched with mustard in homemade flaxseed buns...
Anyway. I digress...
I forgot how much I LOVE cooking dinners, so I'll be trying to whip up some more in my kitchen over the coming weeks and sharing any recipes. Next week, I'm feeling a vegan lentil bake. What do you reckon...?
Any requests, give me a shout!
LAMB AND LENTIL SHEPHERD'S PIE WITH CREAMY CAULIFLOWER MASH
For the meat -
1 tbsp Lucy Bee coconut oil
6 slices pancetta, chopped
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 sticks celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp fresh thyme
100ml red wine
500g leftover roast lamb (I used shoulder)
120ml homemade lamb stock
3 tbsp tomato puree
1 1/4 tbsp Coconom coconut aminos (or tamari or soy sauce)
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp sugar
Dash hot sauce (to taste)
1 packet Merchant Gourmet Puy Lentils
For the cauliflower mash -
1 extra large cauliflower (or two smaller heads), cut into florets
4 tbsp grass-fed butter
2 tbsp Nutritional Yeast OR cream cheese
Salt and pepper, to taste
1) Preheat the oven to 200C. Heat the oil in a large pan, then toss in the pancetta, onion, carrots, celery and garlic. Give everything a good stir, then fry on a medium heat until softened (about 10 minutes). Add in the thyme and pour in the red wine, then simmer for a couple of minutes.
2) Tip in the leftover lamb, then pour in the stock. Stir through the tomato puree and other seasonings, then season with salt and pepper (to taste). Simmer for around 15 minutes, or until the mixture has reduced, stirring through the puy lentils for the last five minutes.
3) In the meantime, steam your cauliflower until soft, then blitz it in a high-powered blender (I use a Vitamix) with the remaining mash ingredients until smooth - you don't want ANY lumpy bits!
4) Spoon the lamb mixture into a large ovenproof dish, then smooth over the cauliflower mash. Place in the oven to bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the pie is bubbling and the mash slightly golden. Serve up with your favourite veggies and enjoy!