A delicious twist on a family classic, this Curried Shepherd’s Pie with a Sweet Potato Mash Topping is going to be your new favourite midweek meal! Subtly flavoured with Indian spices and topped with nutritious sweet potato, this recipe takes shepherd’s pie to a whole new level – plus this version can be ready in under 40 minutes, making it a brilliant choice for busy weeknights.
Shepherd’s pie is a fabulous British tradition – easy, thrifty, speedy and delicious – it’s midweek cooking at its finest, but I felt it was high time to give this humble British classic a bit of a makeover and take it to the next level – with some added spice…
I am currently working with the ‘LAMB. Tasty Easy Fun’ campaign, as one of their Lambassadors, helping share my love of lamb and showing how easy peasy lamb is to cook with.
One thing I love about lamb is that is goes so well with all sorts of different flavourings – herbs, spices, chilli and lots of different vegetables too – it is so flexible! One of my favourite flavour combinations with lamb is Indian spices – so to make this shepherd’s pie even more exciting, I have added cumin, ginger, garam masala, turmeric and chilli – all flavours which really complement the lamb and make this shepherd’s pie extra delicious.
Then instead of traditional mash, I have topped this pie with sweet potato mash instead – not only does the sweet potato go brilliantly with lamb and Indian spices, but it also counts as one of your 5 a day, making this shepherd’s pie that little bit healthier. As a bonus, this pie contains no dairy, gluten, eggs or nuts, making it suitable for many free from diets too.
To speed things up and make less washing up – I have cooked this dish all in one pan. I have used my trusty cast iron sauté pan, but any pot or pan that can go on the hob and under the grill will do. I simply cook the mince and spices up in the pan, top with the sweet potato mash and them pop the pie under the grill for 10 minutes to brown the top. Much less time-consuming than the traditional oven cooked method.
If you are really short of time, you could miss out the grilling step altogether and simply serve the curried mince with the sweet potato mash straight out onto the plates, cutting 10 minutes off the cooking time!
I have chosen to serve my shepherd’s pie with peas for a super simple midweek supper – but broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and sweetcorn would all work well here. To make things even easier you could throw the frozen peas directly into the mince mixture for the last 5 minutes of cooking time – meaning one less pan to wash!
This is also a great meal to make ahead of time – or you could make extra and freeze in ovenproof containers – then they can simply be defrosted and popped in the oven for a zero effort meal later in the month! If heating from cold, I recommend cooking for 30 minutes in the oven, pre-heated to 180C (gas mark 4).
Curried Shepherd’s Pie with Sweet Potato Mash Topping
Sweet Potato Mash Topping
- 1 kg sweet potatoes chopped into small chunks (leave the skins on for added goodness)
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Black pepper to taste
Curried Lamb Filling
- 2 tablespoons rapeseed or olive oil
- 1 onion diced
- 500 g lamb mince
- 3 cloves garlic crushed or grated
- 3 cm fresh ginger grated
- 1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes or to taste
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 x 400g can chopped tomatoes
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Your favourite vegetables I served mine with peas
- Your favourite pickles and chutneys Mango chutney would be very good here
Put the sweet potato chunks into a large saucepan and pour over enough boiling water to cover, bring back to the boil and then simmer for 15 minutes until the sweet potato is tender. Drain and mash with a little salt and pepper.
While the sweet potato is cooking, put the oil in a wide, shallow grill proof pan (I used a cast iron sauté pan) and add the onions, fry on a low heat with the lid on for 3 minutes until softened.
Remove the lid and turn up the heat. Add the lamb mince and brown for 3 minutes, then turn the heat back down again and add the garlic, ginger, chilli, cumin, turmeric and garam masala, cook for a further 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Add the chopped tomatoes and bring to the boil, then turn down and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn your grill on to medium-high to heat up.
Remove the mince from the heat and spread the mashed sweet potato over the top – place under the pre-heated grill for 10 minutes until nicely browned on top. If your grill is a bit uneven, the pie might need to be turned around after 5 minutes to ensure even browning.
While the shepherd’s pie is under the grill, quickly cook your peas (or whatever vegetable you are having to accompany your shepherd’s pie).
When the pie is nicely browned on top, serve with the veggies and any pickles or chutneys you like.
If you don’t own a suitable grill-proof pan, simply cook the mince in a regular frying pan, then before placing under the grill, transfer the mince to a shallow oven dish, top with the mash and continue with the recipe. You may need to add an extra 5 minute to the cooking time to allow for the fact the oven dish will be cold.
This is a collaborative post with the ‘LAMB. Tasty Easy Fun’ campaign. ‘LAMB. Tasty Easy Fun’ is an EU funded campaign which aims to increase the use of lamb in everyday cooking. Lamb is often considered difficult to cook, expensive, or something to be saved for Sunday roasts. The aim of the campaign is to demonstrate just how tasty, easy and fun lamb is to cook with every day of the week! They also have a wonderful website, full of tasty and easy lamb recipes that go way beyond the traditional roast lamb we all know and love.
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