Sally Oliver’s cottage pie

Jamie Oliver’s parents, Sally and Trevor, cook a country cottage pie.

Serves 8
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes


  • 1 Kallo organic beef stock cube
  • 50g butter
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and finely diced
  • 2 celery sticks, trimmed and finely diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 sprig of fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1kg good-quality British beef mince
  • 2 tablespoons tomato purée
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 drops Tabasco
  • 175ml red wine
  • a pinch of sea salt and black pepper
  • for the mash topping
  • 1kg white potatoes, peeled
  • 75g butter
  • a splash of milk
  • Parmesan cheese, for grating


  1. Preheat the oven to 190ºC/375ºF/gas 5. Dissolve the Kallo organic beef stock cube in 400ml of boiling water.
  2. Melt the butter in a pan on a medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, thyme and bay leaf and sweat for 10 minutes, or until softened but not coloured. Add the beef mince and cook for a further 10 minutes, or until brown. Add the tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco then stir and cook for 2 minutes. Turn the heat up to high and add the red wine. Let it bubble away and reduce for 5 minutes then add the stock and reduce to a medium heat. Simmer for a further 20 minutes, stirring often.
  3. Meanwhile, cut the potatoes into halves and quarters so they’re all a fairly even size. Cook in a pan of boiling, salted water for 15 to 20 minutes, or until cooked through. Drain in a colander and leave to steam dry.
  4. Taste the mince and season accordingly with salt and pepper. Transfer it to an ovenproof dish (approximately 20cm by 30cm). Mash the potatoes with the butter, milk and a pinch of salt and pepper then spread over the top of the mince. Finely grate over a little Parmesan cheese then cook for 45 minutes, or until golden and bubbling.
  5. Serve with buttered peas or a simple side salad.

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