Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Comforting Cottage Lasagne Pie on a cold Autumn evening

Cottage Lasagne Pie


 I have been on my phone a lot more than usual over the last few days communicating with people at home regarding Cyclone Debbie. I am feeling a lot more relaxed now than over the last few days knowing that Cyclone Debbie has passed over Mackay. Whilst lots of unfortunate people have incurred a lot of damage and flooding, thankfully we only had a few branches and lots of fallen foliage landing in our yard and loss of power for 12 hours. A couple of very good friends and neighbours have kept an eye on our property and have checked inside the house to ensure that everything is ok. Part of me would love to go home as soon as possible as a catastrophic event like this really makes you appreciate what you have all over again. I just wanted to be back in Mackay, looking after my home, and ensuring everything was alright. When we left of course there was no indication that this would happen. However the roads are blocked and probably won't open in some places for another week or so. We are also committed to house sitting for our son until they return from overseas and looking after their beautiful two border collie dogs, our grand dogs, ha, ha. So we will stay put over here in the Perth Hills all going well. 


On Tuesday when Debbie was unleashing her wrath on the East Coast, it was a cold and windy day here in the hills so I started cooking some comforting, nourishing food. I want to leave some cooked meals in the freezer here so that when Matthew and Myrtille have finished their work at the end of the day and Hugo is needing to be fed, at least they can heat up a nourishing meal if they haven't had time to cook anything, to relieve some of the pressure on them.

I have called this dish a  Cottage Lasagne Pie as I layered a few lasagne sheets through it instead of using flour to thicken up the mince, and also added some sliced tomato and chopped oregano and parsley to the sliced tomato. Myrtille doesn't like anything thickened with flour so that influenced how I cooked this mince. Cooking tasty savoury mince is a simple thing to do and I basically have this recipe in my head, often adding extra vegetables depending on what I have on hand. It is also a very economical way to stretch the budget for families, and can be frozen in edible portions.

Ingredients:

1 kg good quality beef mince
2 onions, finely chopped
2 large carrots, finely chopped
3 large sticks of celery, finely chopped
1 can chopped tomatoes
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons good quality tomato sauce
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
2 tablespoons chopped oregano
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1/2 can of water or beef stock
Extra chopped vegetables such as zucchini if you wish particularly if you have children eating this
5 large potatoes, boiled and mashed with a little butter and milk

Method:

Saute the onion in a couple of tablespoons of vegetable or olive oil until translucent but not browned. Add the mince and brown it. Add the vegetables and cook until slightly softened, then add the water and sauces and simmer for about 15 minutes until it is all cooked. Season lightly with some ground pepper. Simmer, until the liquid has cooked down, about 30 minutes then taste it to see if it needs any more seasoning.

Place a layer of lasagne sheets on the base of your rectangular dish. Add half the mince, then another layer of lasagne sheets, and then the rest of the mince. Top with sliced tomato and chopped herbs.
Top with mashed potato and decorate with a sprinkle of dried thyme.

Placed in a moderate oven, 180 deg. C, and bake for 45 minutes or until the top is nicely browned.


Whilst I was cooking, Mr. HRK was saying how he wished I was cooking pies instead of Cottage pie, as we were both feeling like comfort food on this particular day. So I saved some of the cooked mince, and used some of it with some puff pastry to make a few small pies for us. They were delicious.




Whilst the mince was cooking I also had a pot of homemade chicken stock cooking on the stove to freeze, and I will  make some soup from that at a later date. It will be nutritious and healing to have over here in the cold Perth winters when a lot of people catch the flu.



This is the stock simmering away on the stove.

Thanks for visiting my blog and have an enjoyable and safe weekend. Best wishes,
Pauline





2 comments:

  1. With all the rain it is cool here too, Pauline. That food looks very comforting indeed. I hope your house was okay with all the rain yesterday. It looks like Debbie is heading out to sea tomorrow and we will be getting strong wind gusts instead of the rain. She has certainly made her presence felt.

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    Replies
    1. All pretty much back to normal at home now.
      The weather in Perth is perfect at the moment. It's a great time to visit.

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