Winner Winner Vegan Dinner - Cottage Pie Recipe
Updated: Jul 23
This is a really satisfying plate of comfort food. A family winner, cheap as chips, full of protein and fibre too. Great to cook ahead and leave on the the timer in the oven leaving just any extra veg to cook for a wholesome family meal, freezes well too. I like the combination of the soft lentils and pieces of soya mince. I use dried mince as it doesn't take up freezer space and is very cheap and versatile - Holland and Barrett are my go to, buy one get one half price....winner winner soya dinner! Morrisons sell it in the Indian part of the World Food section too. You could use frozen soya mince, or quorn mince and play around with the water content to get the consistency right. This dish is complete on its own, or serve with extra veg and vegetarian gravy. This quantity servers 4 humans with decent appetites......
The mushroom ketchup is worth seeking out as a vegan must have to keep in your fridge. It doesn't seem to be routinely stocked but I find it in the bigger Tescos and Sainsburys, so always get a stash when I see it. It is a worthy substitute for worcester sauce....minus the unfortunate anchovies!
The dried soya mince cooking instructions suggest soaking before cooking. I find this makes it a bit watery and sloppy. This is why I add a bit more stock than is necessary for the lentil base initially, as it then soaks up the flavours of the sauce rather than just water....there is method in my madness!
The gravy browning is optional. I like to add it as it gives a deep colour reminiscent of days of old, but adds nothing to the flavour so can be missed out if you want. It's easy enough to get hold of, I used Sarsons, and found it just by the stock cubes in most supermarkets
1 tsp vegetable oil
1 onion chopped
1litre Veg stock
150g red lentils
2 large carrots diced, around 300g worth
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp mushroom ketchup
Black pepper to taste
Salt to taste
1/4 tsp gravy browning (see notes)
175g frozen peas
75g dried soya mince
50g dairy free spread
1kg of potatoes that are good mashers - I like Maris Pipers
75ml soy milk
Salt and pepper to taste
Place the onions with the vegetable oil in a decent sized pan and gently fry until they begin to soften. Add the stock, thyme, and the lentils, cover loosely and gently simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally
Add the carrots and simmer for another 10 minutes. Add the peas, soya mince, tomato puree, mushroom ketchup, salt and pepper to taste and simmer for a further 5 minutes, uncovered stirring frequently. Place into an ovenproof dish.
Preheat the oven to 190c
Peel and cut the potatoes into small chunks, boil for around 20 minutes or until tender. Drain, and mash with the soy milk, the dairy free spread, salt and pepper. Beat well with a large spoon and place on top of the vegetable mix.
To stop the potato sinking, I place it in small blobs on the top then tease it together with a fork.
Bake in the oven for 25 minutes or until golden and bubbling