Carey Boucher Erasmus is an excellent food writer,researcher and photographer. She has been writing recipes for Crush, an online digital magazine since its inception in 2010. This is one of hers that appeared in Crush.
The “Feel Good” Cottage Pie
500 g cubed butternut
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
Olive for drizzling
2 gem squash, halved and boiled until soft
Salt, pepper and ground nutmeg
500 g ostrich mince or lean beef mince
1 medium onion, finely chopped
250 g button mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 t (5 ml) dried rosemary
½ t( 2 ml) smoked dried chilli flakes
1 c (250 ml) hot water
1 Knorr beef stock pot
½ oxtail stock cube
1 tin lentils, well rinsed and drained
1 c (250 ml) frozen baby peas
Salt and pepper to taste
3 T (45 ml) grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Place the butternut and sweet potato into a baking tray, drizzle with a little olive oil and season. Roast for 35 minutes or until soft. Place into a bowl and mash really well. Scoop the seeds out of the gem squash and combine with the butternut mixture. Season well and use a whisk to fluff the mash up a bit. Set aside. Reduce oven temperature to 180°C.
Meanwhile, Brown the mince on a heavy based pot with a little olive oil until crumbly, remove and set aside.
Sauté the onion in the meat juices until softened, then add the mushrooms and fry until most of the liquid has cooked out of them.
Add the mince back to the pot together with the garlic, rosemary, chilli, water and stock and simmer for 15 minutes or until most of the liquid has reduced. Add the lentils and peas and cook for a further 5 minutes. The mixture should be thick and not too saucy. Season to taste.
Spread the mince mixture into a medium baking dish. Top with mash and rough up with a fork. Sprinkle with Parmesan and season with a pinch of nutmeg.
Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the mash in golden and the mince mixture starts to bubble up from the sides.
Serve with a crisp seasonal salad.
Replace gem squash with 2 small sweet potatoes.
Bulk mince up by adding 1 celery stalk and 1 carrot, finely diced
Replace peas with chickpeas.
Michael’s wine recommendation – CLICK HERE
Carey Boucher Erasmus is a food writer, photographer, recipe developer and restaurant consultant.
She says, “As far as I can remember, I loved being in the kitchen. I grew up watching my mother in wonder as she prepared a myriad of dishes on any given day. And when my grandmother baked, I would be the official bowl licker. I even owned a mini wooden oven and stove set and always imagined myself being a chef while “cooking up” pots of mud and grass.
When I was old enough to reach the real stove and sink, I started cooking and experimenting – from dodgy rubbery microwave chocolate cake to edible and sometimes rather delicious meals. I loved home-economics in high school and even joined a “catering society”.
After matric, I studied Food science and Nutrition at Cape Technikon where I specialised in recipe, product development, nutrition and food communication (styling, food demonstrating etc.). In my final year, I graduated with 8 distinctions and achieved the title of Class valedictorian which I was pretty chuffed about. I was ready to go out into the food industry!”
Do follow her on her website – http://bitsofcarey.co.za