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Comfort foods- Recipes that are prepared easily



Potato Croquettes:
Warming finger food that can be made with left over mash.

Add to the mashed potatoes a lightly beaten egg, chopped parsley (or any herb you prefer), salt and pepper. Mix well.

Scoop up a small quantity and make a small ball in your hand, press a little opening in the middle and add a small amount of chopped mozzarella cheese, or any soft cheese you prefer, and anything else you might like: a small amount of chopped bangers?

Make an oval.

Dip into a lightly beaten egg, then roll onto breadcrumbs. (Those you made with the sliced bread ends?)

Deep or shallow fry until golden brown all around.

Place on a paper towel covered plate to drain excess oil.

Serve and eat while still hot.


Cottage Pie in a cast iron Skillet

The traditional Cottage or Shepherd’s pie was always a favourite of mine . Come in fishing recently with a couple of mates . Was as cold as a "mother and laws kiss " Needed something to warm us up when we got home so decided to throw together this recipe given to me by an American friend .


  • Cast iron Skillet . I used a well seasoned 28cm Croton from Aldis . Any frying pan would do I just like cast iron .

  • Saucepan to boil the potatoes in .

  • Vegetable grater . I used a box OXO good grip .

  • Potato masher

  • Measuring cups , spoons and spatula .


  • 500g of ground or minced meat . Use the leanest low fat meat you can get

  • 3-4 Medium to large sized potatoes . Peeled and quartered .

  • 2 carrots

  • 1 onion medium

  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste . I had none so used Mons sauce .

  • 2 - 3 sticks of celery .

  • I cup of peas . I used frozen . Some cooks add corn . I can’t digest it so left it out .

  • Parmesan cheese . Shredded or grated . You will need a cup of it .

  • Worcestershire sauce . I used Hoolbrooks but other brands just as good .

  • Red wine . I had none so we cracked a couple of VB’s and added about 3 tablespoons :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

  • Beef stock . I used Campbells

  • Seasoning to taste . I used home made SPG ( Salt , pepper and garlic ) To make your own SPG the recipe is 4 parts cooking salt , 2 parts garlic flakes and 1 part coarse black pepper . I give the pepper corns a wack in the mortar and pestle then add ingredients a glass jar and shake to mix .

  • A knob of butter and some milk to help in mashing the potatoes .


  • Put the quartered potatoes in the saucepan and start to cook them .

  • If using a cast iron skillet give it a good wipe with cooking oil . I used Extra Virgin Olive oil . Put it over a medium heat and add the meat . If the meat is very fatty pour the fat off as it is cooking . You want a dry mix . Pour it into a container not down the sink .Work the meat around with a spatula .

  • Grab your grater and grate the carrots very finely into the cooking meat . Then grate the celery and the onion into the mix in the skillet . Grating the vegetables finely means they cook quickly and bind the meat . Add 1 cup of peas . Frozen works .

  • Add 1/2 Cup of beef stock then 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire Sauce .

  • Add 1 tablespoon of tomato paste to mixture . I used Mon sauce

  • Use your spatula or spoon to work the Worcestershire and tomato paste ( sauce ) thoroughly threw the mixture . Add spices to your taste .

  • Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until mixture is that dry it starts to stick to side of pan .

  • Take the skillet off the heat source and put it aside .

  • The potatoes should be cooked soft by now . Drain them well and mash them adding butter or milk to get a good mash .

  • Add a cup of shredded or grated Parmesan cheese to the potatoes and keep mashing them till the cheese is well incorporated into the mix . You want a firm not too creamy mix . To test for this dip spatula into the mash . Turn it over , if mash stays on spatula the mixture is good . If it falls off add Corn flour , I used plain flour to thicken the mash .

  • Spoon the mash over the meat in the skillet smoothing it out with the back of a spoon until all meat is covered .

  • Place the skillet in the oven at about 200c temp for 5-10 minutes or until potato start to brown and crust . I threw some more cheese on the top . Some Bega extra tasty i had . Just thinly sliced it .

  • Took the skillet out of the oven when cooked . Put it on a trivet in the middle of the table , cracked another VB while it cooled , and then we scoffed the pie down .

  • This is a bare bones recipe other vegetables can no doubt be added . I used what I had on hand .

Cheers ,