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Cottage pie – by Clare Latimer

09 October 2006

Ingredients (Serves four)
1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
1tbs oil
350g lean minced beef
2tbs oatmeal
1tbs flour
50ml brown ale
2 tomatoes
12g tomato ketchup
1tbs Worcestershire sauce
1tbs fruit chutney
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1tsp oregano, finely chopped
350g potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
75ml milk
1 whole bulb smoked garlic, cut in half horizontally
50g butter
50g Cheddar cheese, grated

Method 1. Preheat the oven 200°C.
2. Put the onions and oil into a saucepan and cook slowly for five minutes or until softened but not brown.
3. Add the meat and stir over the heat for one minute.
4. Add the oatmeal and flour, then the brown ale - adding more ale if necessary.
5. Stir and leave to simmer very gently for about 10 minutes.
6. Score the tomatoes and plunge them into a bowl of boiling water for 15 seconds or until the skin splits, then plunge them into cold water.
7. Peel and finely chop tomatoes, then add them to the meat mixture with the tomato ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, chutney, salt, pepper and herbs. Stir well.
8. Remove from the heat.
9. Cook the potatoes and celeriac in boiling sailed water for about 20 minutes or until soft. Drain and return them to the saucepan.
10. At the same time as the potatoes are cooking, heat the milk in a saucepan with the halved garlic bulb. Watch and when it comes to the boil, turn off and leave to infuse for 20 minutes.
11. Remove the garlic bulb from the milk and squeeze out all the pulp from the cloves into the drained potatoes.
12. Discard the garlic skin.
13. Add the butter and milk, season and mash well until light and fluffy.
14. Put the meat mixture into an ovenproof dish and smooth over.
15. Cover with the mashed potato, smoothing over the top with a fork.
16. Sprinkle over the cheese and cook in the oven for 30 minutes until potato is golden brown.

By Clare Latimer, chef proprietor, Clare's Kitchen

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