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Best vegetarian recipes: Delia’s Vegetarian Shepherd’s pie with a tweak

vegetarian shepherd's pieWe are chomping our way through veggie dishes on alternate nights. Actually, it’s been a joy so far. Great flavours and combinations. A revelation.

Danny wakes me in the mornings. As he’s putting down my large mug of sweetened tea, he gently enquires who is cooking tonight.
“It’s me and it’s vegetarian tonight.”

This response has as much to do with not having to cook as relishing the dishes that appear on the table.

Delia’s vegetarian shepherd’s pie is truly wonderful. So good that I cooked the filling for six pies to freeze in one go. The main filling has just the right combination of texture and flavour. She then adds an extra ingredient – a layer of fresh tomatoes just under the potato crust before baking. Truly inspirational.

I played with the topping. Initially, when I made her pie I didn’t have soft goat’s cheese so I boiled and riced some potatoes and added grated feta. The topping was OK and the content divine.

The next time, I followed the recipe and made Delia’s goat’s cheese mash. Probably the goat’s cheese was too mild as it tasted a bit wishy washy.

A couple of days ago I returned home to find no Danny at the door. We have a rule that the one at home always greets the one returning home A great tip for getting over a tiff, an outbreak of swamp fever or just making one feel good.

I rushed upstairs to find him deeply asleep. Exhausted from a 4 am start.

As he snoozed I tried a different topping on the pie. Creamed mashed potatoes with a grated Cheshire cheese crust. Comforting and perfect when he stumbled downstairs a few hours later, looking for supper.

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  1. Try Butternut squash and potato mash.

  2. I made this a few weeks ago, as there was a vegetarian in the group, and it went down an absolute treat and has inspired me to try out more veggie meals myself!

    I served it with some puy lentils cooked in red wine and rosemary (taken from here without the sausages of course!) which was also tremendous.

    Glad to see some others are enjoying it…!

  3. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Sally

    I’d love to hear how it turns out!

  4. Thank you both for the ideas. I’m going to try the cheese with olive oil and herbs. And, with skins on. In fact, I can’t wait! Strange, because before, just the mention of the stuff used to give me the shivers and he-be-gee-bees.

  5. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Kate(uk)

    That sound really delicious, thank you so much for the recipe!

  6. If you dislike mash, try making it from potatos with their skins on, mash with creme fraiche and stir in some chopped spring onions with plenty of seasoning.The nuttiness of the skins, sourness of the creme fraiche and the aromatic onion defies dislike!

  7. Fiona Nevile

    Hi Sally

    Cheese works well with mash. Either stirred in with olive oil and herbs or as a topping to creamed potato.

    Thanks for dropping by.

  8. I’ve hated mash since school days. Then tried making celeriac and other veg, but, never even considered cheese – what a wally! Definitely going to do this now and, as a vegetarian friend is coming to stay soon, shall also try this recipe. Thanks again

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