Shepherd’s pie with Puy lentils.


Shepherd’s pies come in all kinds of vegan variations, but I am particularly fond of this version with Puy lentils, which I originally came across in a Rose Elliot cookbook. Over time I have stopped reading and following the recipe, but started eyeballing ingredients instead, giving this dish, which is hearty, tasty, filling and a child-pleaser, a slight twist of my own.

Shepherd’s pie with Puy lentils


For the lentil-tomato layer:

  •  1 cup Puy lentils (green lentils with a blackish shade; they retain a good bite after cooking, which is quite essential for this dish).
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp herbes de Provence
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 onions
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1,5 – 2 cups passata (or 1 can cubed tomatoes, or the equivalent in fresh tomatoes, of course)
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 2 tbsp red pesto
  • 1 tbsp agave syrup
  • 1 tbsp herbes de Provence
  • salt and pepper

For the mash:

  • vegetable stock (I prefer not to use too much, so that I don’t need to throw out too much liquid – including vitamins – afterwards).
  • 1,5 cup potatoes
  • 3/4 cup parsnip
  • 3/4 cup celeriac
  • some hint of a smokey flavour: either smokey vegan cheese, smoked tofu, liquid smoke, or smoked salt. Here I used one package of SmokeyRisella, and used it partly in the mash (about 1/3), partly grated or in thin slices on top of the dish (2/3). Previously I have used grated smoked tofu (I especially love the Taifun brand), or added some smoked salt or half a teaspoon of liquid smoke. But I prefer the version with smokey vegan cheese.





For the lentil-tomato layer:

  • Bring the vegetable stock to a boil, together with the bay leaves and the herbs, and add the lentils. Be careful not to overcook the lentils, so regularly check their texture. When the lentils are fork tender, drain them and set aside.
  • Whilst the lentils are cooking, gently fry the onions in some oil until translucent and slightly browned, then add the garlic.
  • Add in the lentils, when these are done, together with the remaining ingredients. Let simmer for 5 more minutes.
  • Ladle into a casserole dish.

For the mash:

  • Bring the stock to a boil and add the cubed vegetables.
  • Cook until fork tender, drain (keeping the stock), then mash, using some of the cooking liquid, if necessary. Make sure not to use too much liquid, so that the mash doesn’t turn out too soft. When using smokey vegan cheese, like I did here, keep in mind that this also softens the mash. Adding extra oil, vegan cream, or some of the retained vegetable stock is then normally not necessary in this scenario.
  • Spoon onto the lentil-tomato layer
  • Finish the top layer with some grated smoked vegan cheese, or brush with some olive oil.
  • Bake the shepherd’s pie in a preheated oven, under the grill. 15 minutes at 18-200 degrees C will be suffcient to give the dish a nicely browned top layer.




One thought on “Shepherd’s pie with Puy lentils.

  1. Pingback: Cannelloni with tofu ricotta and spinach. | spoons & splatters

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