Easy Peasy Shepherd’s Pie

Whoa.

What a full week!  First week back at uni and it feels like I’ve been back for ages lol  It is definitely going to be a jam-packed semester with two placement based subjects and after one seminar on Family Law, it’s clear that the 100% exam will not be a walk in the park (though law exams never are).  That means that blogging will once again have to take a backseat to RL.  *sigh* Cooking will sadly have to as well but I did do a fair bit of it over the break having been inspired by MasterChef (#TEAMANDY!).  It was the first time that I’d followed the series as closely as I did – possibly due to exam procrastination ahem.

we need lots of garlic for this recipe…

Anyhow, there are a number of dishes I cooked (and documented) however, I’ve decided to skip ahead to something I made earlier this week for my Student Alpha group.  Why skip ahead instead of going in chronological order of making the dishes?  I thought you’d never ask ;).

lots of onions… and tears.

1. It’s a recipe connected with fond memories from my childhood as it was one of the first recipes that I properly learnt from one of friend’s mother back in primary school.

Three key ingredients…

2. I spontaneously made an Instagram game out of the cooking process (Guess what’s cooking? – start here).  Congrats to Lianne from Food Made With Love for guessing correctly :D.

butter and lots of it for browning the onion and garlic…

3. It is always so well received whenever we cook it for potluck at church or bring it to dinner parties.

lots of colour :)

4. Though it seems like there are a lot of steps, it’s really easy-peasy.

Need I give you anymore reasons?

Ready to give it a try?

Easy-Peasy Shepherd’s Pie

Serves 4

all photos taken on phone (Samsung Galaxy SII)

Ingredients:

  • ½ kg of mince beef
  • 3-5 onions, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2-4 clovers of garlic, finely chopped
  • A bag of frozen corn, peas and carrots
  • Butter
  • 1 cup of warm milk
  • Shredded cheese
  • Tomato sauce (for colour and to taste)
  • 1 cup of water
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Flour
  • ½ kg of potatoes, cut into quarters

Method:

  1. Heat the butter in a large saucepan or pot.  Let the butter melt and when the saucepan is hot, add the onions.  When onions are soft and tender, add the garlic.
  2. When the garlic and onions have become a golden brown colour, add the mince meat.  Stir around until the combination is mixed through and until the meat has changed to a brown colour.
  3.  Add the cup of water and mix around for a minute.  Then add the flour to thicken the mixture.  Add tomato sauce until the mixture has enough colour.
  4.  Next pour in the amount of corns, peas and carrots to your liking.  Stir.  Add salt to your taste and add more tomato sauce if you require.
  5.  Set aside.  Boil some hot water and then add the potatoes with 2 sprinkles of salt.  When the potatoes have softened, drain all the water away.  While waiting, preheat oven to 180⁰C.
  6.  Put the potatoes in a large bowl (used to mash the potatoes).  Add two tablespoons of butter and mash the potatoes together.  Add the shredded cheese (to your liking but usually about 2 handfuls) and mix.  Slowly pour in the warm milk while you are still mixing the potatoes.
  7. Now, spoon in the mince beef mixture into the bottom of a medium sized baking dish so that it has a flat top.  Next, add the potato mixture on top and smooth out the top as well.
  8. Place in the oven for 30 minutes or until the top begins to become a golden brown colour.  When it is ready, take it out of the oven to cool for about 10 minutes and then it is ready to be served.

 Additional notes:

  • Suggestion is to serve it with a fresh green salad like my Avocado and Apple Salad so it’s not too heavy.
  • As you’ll see in the ingredients, a lot of it is just to taste so sorry that I can’t give exact measurements.  A bit of trial and error never hurt anyway ;).
  • The tray I used wasn’t big enough for all the filling so I made a few mini ones:
mini pies!

I may have had two for dinner tonight… ;).

Well, hope you enjoy making your own easy-peasy shepherd’s pie!  Let me know how it goes :).

Have a great weekend everybody!

Random Question: What was the first dish that you ever learnt to cook?

♥ Ames

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What’s been happening lately…

Hello hello!  The semester has wrapped up!  I’ve submitted my last assignments, made my last oral presentation and just one exam and two essays to smash before HOLIDAYS! *sigh* I feel like I’ve used up all my words for the next little while so here’s what’s been happening lately in photos and in as few words as possible:

1. I got published!

I probably was just the first person to put up their hand for the job, but it was fun putting a few reviews together for Purely Dicta, the law school magazine :).  I was a bit disappointed that the photos turned out pixilated but apparently there was a problem with the entire file when it went to print so… *shrugs*  Now that it’s been published, I can finally post my thoughts on Middle Fish and Saigon Pho here (soonish)!

2. Facebook hiatus

For the sake of my studies… *sigh* but having said that, I’ve found it liberating to not feel the need to know what is on everyone else’s mind at any given moment… less noise.

3. New header!

See above!! :D  As some have already noted, there is indeed a lovely header created by a law school friend of mine. JZ!  Isn’t she so talented?  I gave her an idea of food and photography and she came up with that :D!  Looks a little bit like April‘s now that I think of it… anyway, I hope to bake her something yummy to say thank you after exams… maybe Wince’s thank you cookies? :P

4. Snag Stand

There’s a funny story as to how I ended up at a hot dog joint and got a sausage but no bread… story for another post (though no promises that it’ll be as funny as it seems right now in my head).  Thanks to Libby for raising my curiosity to give them a try though :).

5. Oriental Teahouse

Had an impromptus catch up at one of the new additions to the Melbourne Central eatery scene, Oriental Teahouse.  A lovely ‘Relaxing Tea’ along with some dim sum after my last class for the semester…

6. I MADE A QUICHE

not the greatest photo but it was delicious!

I saw SUPER.  I saw SIMPLE.  I knew I had to make it!  See the photo of the full quiche dish in the Instagram feed.  I’ll post up my version after exams (had to make some adjustments) but essentially I followed Peas and Crayon’s recipe ^^.  SO YUMMY!  Gonna reheat the leftovers from yesterday night and eat it now!

7. Impulse buys…

I may or may not have taken advantage of Book Depository 10% off sale a few weeks ago and there may or may not be a copy of Hunger Games in the top package that came today.  And of course I didn’t get sucked into purchasing two cute dresses and a pretty skirt after reading Karen Cheng’s post on Sunnygirl ahem.

OKAY.  That used more words than I anticipated lol but anyways, that’s the short version of what’s been happening lately :D.

Hope you’ve all been well!  Apologies if I disappear from the blog-o-sphere in the next couple of weeks, lots of cramming and essaying ahead!  Know I still love you guys and hope you’ll join me for more foodie and photographic adventures in the future :).  Take care and best wishes for all the uni students out there! WE CAN DO IT! [insert name] FIGHTING~

Random Question: Have you read or watched Hunger Games?  What did you think of it? 

Bonus question: Where’s a good Melbourne restaurant venue to host an event for 80+ people?

♥ Ames