Call us now on

0800 201 4811

Mary Berry's Vegetable and Lentil Cottage Pie Recipe

Mary Berry

Mary Berry

Author

Recipes

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped into about 1cm cubes
  • 200g piece of swede, chopped into about 1cm cubes
  • 125g dried red lentils
  • 400g can plum tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp sun-dried tomato paste
  • 350ml vegetable stock
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 85g fresh spinach, chopped
  • 900g smooth potatoes, such as Desiree or Estima, peeled and cut into large chunks, about 5cm 
  • 30g butter
  • 5 tbsp full-fat or semi-skimmed milk
  • 140g mature Cheddar cheese, coarsely grated
  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large, non-stick sauté pan. Add the onions and garlic and fry for 8-10 minutes over a medium-high heat or until starting to turn golden, stirring occasionally. Pour the remaining tablespoon of oil into the pan, tip in the carrots and swede, and fry for 3 minutes.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium. Stir in the lentils, tomatoes, sun-dried tomato paste, and stock. Season and simmer, covered, for 35-40 minutes over a low heat, until the carrots and swede are tender and the lentils have softened.
  3. Remove from the heat, stir in the spinach, and let it wilt. Pour the mixture into the baking dish. Leave to cool. Preheat the oven to 200C (fan 180C/400F/Gas 6).
  4. Put the potatoes into a large pan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, add salt, and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Drain well. Put the butter and milk in the pan and warm through over a low heat. Remove from the heat, return the potatoes to the pan, and mash with the milk and butter, then whisk until smooth. Season, then stir in the cheese.
  5. Spread the mash over the filling. Bake for 30-40 minutes until golden and bubbling.
KEYS TO PERFECTION
Moist, jucy filling
The filling should be moist with plenty of sauce, but not sloppy. Add 2-3 tablespoons of water if it’s too dry. Leave the filling to cool before adding the topping, as it will support the mash better.

Smooth, creamy mash
The potatoes are ready for mashing when a knife goes in easily. If undercooked, the mash will be lumpy; if overcooked, it will be sloppy. Mash the potatoes with hot milk and butter off the heat, then whisk with a balloon whisk.

Decorative topping
Spoon the cheesy, seasoned mash over the cooled vegetable and lentil layer. Spread it evenly over the surface, making patterns like furrows with a round-bladed knife to create an attractive, textured effect.

Mary Berry Cooks the Perfect Book

The nation’s favourite cook has a new book out in paperback. Mary Berry Cooks the Perfect has 100 fail-safe recipes complete with tips to ensure success every time. Available now (with an exclusive tote bag) from DK £20.

Recipes

Recipes

Root Vegetable Boulangère

A lovely, comforting dish, this was traditionally made just with potatoes and cooked in the baker's oven. This version uses parsnips and carrots instead of all potatoes to keep the calorie count down and give extra flavour. ...Read more

Recipes

Minestrone Soup

Indulge in a warming bowl of minestrone soup. This hearty and nutritious soup is a tasty crowd-pleaser and depending on what vegetables you have available to you, is very easy to tweak. ...Read more

Recipes

Strawberry Jam

Jams and chutneys can be a great way to use up large quantities of fruit. Once made, they can keep for up to a year and make an excellent gift. This strawberry jam recipe is also the perfect accompaniment to an afternoon cream tea ...Read more

Recipes

Sprout Gratin

These sprouts will easily convert even the stubborn of sprout haters into fans. Laced with bacon lardons, double cream, almonds and cheese make this dish a luscious accompaniment to Christmas turkey. ...Read more

Recipes

Cranberry and Sausage Stuffing Balls with Bacon

Cranberry Sausage Stuffing is every festive flavor of Christmas which is baked into one savory, sweet and very satisfying dish for all of the family to enjoy. With the added bacon, it is sure to impress all of your dinner guests this Christmas time.  ...Read more

Recipes

Chickpea and Cauliflower Curry

This beautifully simple, light curry is a great vegetarian option. It’s always preferable to use some carefully selected ground and whole spices in a recipe like this for those fresher flavours.  ...Read more

Recipes

Peach Melba Tartlets 

Jenny Culver, Bettys Cookery School tutor, has handpicked one of her favourite recipes for you to make. Perfect as an impressive centrepiece to an afternoon tea, her Peach Melba Tartlets are full of fresh, indulgent flavours. ...Read more