#MeatFreeMonday | Lentil Shepherd’s Pie

| May 25, 2015 | 3 Comments

As my husband is vegetarian we quite often have meat free meals, but since it is #MeatFreeMonday I thought I would share what we had for dinner tonight.

I have been making a version of this recipe for as long as I can remember, my husband decided to become vegetarian a couple of months after we started seeing each other – that was almost 19 years ago. I was a big meat eater, having grown up with the idea that a meal revolved around the meat component, and dishes like lasagne and spaghetti bolognese were a staple of my flatting days. Mum’s lasagne was my favourite dish and it was full of veges so making a version without the meat wasn’t such a biggie, especially when I was introduced to lentils.

Using red lentil’s in the sauce makes it nice and “meaty” and filling, I use the same basic sauce recipe for my spag bol, lasagne and shepherd’s pie and it has satisfied, and been enjoyed by, even my fussiest meat eating friends and family.

Lentil Shepherd's Pie

Lentil Shepherd’s Pie

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 brown onion
2 cloves garlic crushed
1/2 red capsicum
3-4 mushrooms
1/2 large (or 1 small) carrot
1/2 zucchini
1 cup red lentils
400g can chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup water
1 teaspoon dried mixed herbs or small handful of fresh herbs (I use 60% flatleaf parsley, 40% oregano & thyme)
1/2-1 teaspoon tumeric
Mashed potato – to your liking (I use kumara) and enough to cover your pie.

Method
While your potatoes for your mash are cooking heat the oil in the fry pan and dice the onion, capsicum and mushrooms. Add the onion to the pan and fry for 5 mins, add the garlic and fry for another minute before adding the capsicum and mushroom. Grate in the carrot and zucchini and continue to fry until all veges are soft.

Add in the can of tomatoes, along with the lentils and a cup of water (I use the tomato can to get the remaining bits of tomato), then the tomato paste, the herbs and tumeric. Bring to the boil and simmer until the lentils are cooked. Season with salt and pepper.

Lentil Shepherd's Pie

Once cooked add to a casserole or lasagne dish and top with your mashed potato. For my dish tonight I made half potato and half red kumara (I baked the kumara before mashing with butter, cream cheese, salt and pepper. YUM!) as I am eating low carb.

Bake in the oven at 180-200 degrees until the top is golden brown.

This will easily serve 4 or 6 with a small side dish. I served mine on a bed of baby spinach.

Don’t be fooled into thinking my kids ate this! They had bangers and mash instead.

 

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Category: Food & Drink, Recipes

Comments (3)

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  1. Genie says:

    I’m curious now, did you try to feed this to your kids? I’ve tried many times, but I don’t like lentils. I want to because all the cool kids are eating lentils. I won’t cook them though because I’m scared of putting too much effort into something I probably won’t like so for now, I just leave my lentil tasting to professionals and to friends who love lentils (and are kind enough to let me try them knowing that I don’t like them).

    • Nicky says:

      They used to eat it (and love it!) when they were babies but the older they got the more they rebelled, it is to do with the texture.
      So here is my tip for kids… if you puree up the sauce/lentil mix then it looks like pasta sauce, tastes like pasta sauce … my youngest declares it is his FAVOURITE pasta, but he won’t touch it unless it is smooth. I think with lentils it is all about the flavours you use with them, lentils on their own are not so good! I use lentils alot. Red lentils for sauces like this, but Puy (French) Lentils for Lentil & Roast Veg Salad is another easy favourite – these have more bite whereas the red lentils go mushy.
      I’ll roast any vege I have (kumara, pumpkin, carrot, capsicum, zucchini, mushrooms, beetroot etc) and boil the lentils with a bay leaf and oxo vege stock (1 cup lentils to 3 cups water). They take about 30 mins to cook. Then I combine with the vege and add a little balsamic and lemon juice (about a tablespoon of each). Stir through some baby spinach and top with feta. It’s so good!

  2. Nishu says:

    Gosh! This sounds so perfect! I can already taste it..haha
    I’m a vegetarian too. Lentils are my fave!

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