Prompted by a fascinating article on the work of Welsh shepherdess Claire Williams in the Guardian’s ‘Cook’ supplement, we had a delicious Sunday lunch of roast leg of Welsh lamb, leeks, carrots, beans, parsnip bake, roasted potatoes and mint sauce. Unfortunately there were only four of us, despite catering for an expected turn out of seven family members. While there was certainly plenty of lamb and vegetables to go around, there was food left over by the end of lunch.

When my daughter was young, she used to cry if we threatened to throw away any left-over food. She was very aware of starvation in other parts of the world and if we could have parcelled up left-over food and despatched it overseas, she would have been very happy. As a consequence, we have always been very aware of the need to buy just enough food for the family and reduce the risk of surplus food.  However, from time to time, there will be left-over food and it is a challenge to use up these ‘Ls’, as we have begun to call them.

We faced the ‘Ls’ challenge this week  and with some glorious Welsh lamb and tasty fresh vegetables cluttering up the fridge, the obvious left-over dish was to be Shepherd’s Pie. If it had been beef, it would have been Cottage Pie or chicken, then Chicken Pie.

Mincing the Lamb
We use a meat mincer purchased from the Lakeland store at £31.99 (below), alternatively you can buy more expensive mincing equipment to fit to food processors or food mixers.

The Lakeland mincer is easy to assemble and is ideal for mincing all types of meats and for making sausages.
Remove as much meat from the left over joint and cut into small cube size shapes before mincing.
Ingredients for Shepherd's Pie:
Left-over Cooked Minced Lamb
Left-over Vegetables (carrots, peas, beans, leeks)
Left over Mushrooms (if you have any)
2 finely chopped medium size onions
6  medium potatoes (Maris Piper or King Edwards are best for mashing)
2 tbs of gravy granules
1/4 pint of boiled water
40 g butter
1tbs milk

Finely chop all the left-over vegetables.

Boil the potatoes until soft and fluffy, add the butter and milk and mash.

Fry the onions until soft and then add the minced lamb and mushrooms.

Continue cooking for a further 3 minutes, stir regularly.

Add the left-over vegetables and stir

Add the gravy granules and the boiling water and stir. A little additional boiling water may be required if the dish is too thick.

Put the minced lamb mixture into an oven proof dish.

Pipe on the mashed potato over the lamb mixture or spread as evenly as possible with a spoon, until all the lamb mixture has been covered.

Place in a pre heated oven at 180* or gas mark 5 and cook for 30 minutes until the potato is nicely browned.


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