2 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions, finely diced
2 carrots, diced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 kg lamb mince
1 cup red wine
1 tablespoon cornflour
300 ml beef stock
1 bunch of thyme, leaves picked
1 bunch of rosemary, leaves picked
1 bunch of mint, leaves picked and roughly chopped
200 g frozen peas
2 kg desiree potatoes, chopped
100 g butter
Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup thickened cream, warmed
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
2. To make the potato topping, take a large saucepan, cover the potatoes with cold salted water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the potato is soft enough to mash (20-25 minutes). Drain in a colander and allow to it to sit on top of the saucepan while it’s still on a low heat for a minute or two. This heat helps dry out the potatoes slightly. Now place the potatoes back in the pan and begin mashing. Add the butter, a large pinch of salt and pepper and half the warm cream. Continue mashing and incorporating the rest of the cream until you have a nice smooth mash.
3. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large frying pan or wok on medium-high heat, add the onion, carrot and a pinch of salt and sauté for 3-5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and sauté for a further 2 minutes.
4. Add the mince to the pan, stir to break up and fry for 5 minutes until brown. Deglaze the pan with the red wine and flambé. To flambé, tip the pan carefully away from you but towards an open flame, allow the vapours to ignite and keep the pan at arm’s length. Allow the alcohol to burn off naturally before you continue cooking.
5. Sprinkle the cornflour over the meat mixture and stir constantly for a few minutes to cook out the flour and remove any lumps. Pour in the stock, add the herbs and cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes to thicken the gravy and intensify the flavour. Remove from the heat, add the peas and season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer the mixture to an ovenproof dish.
6. Carefully spoon the mashed potato onto the mince and spread out unevenly and bake for 30 minutes. Finish under the grill for a golden brown topping.
Recipe from Home Cook, Aspiring Chef by Will and Steve, published by HarperCollins, RRP $39.99.