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Adding lentils to shepherds pie

(16 Posts)
Happytodayhappytomorrow Sun 10-Jan-21 10:24:01

We are cutting down on our meat consumption and I am looking to do a mix of mince and lentils in a shepherds pie today.
I did a pure lentil for meat swap last week and it didn’t go down well with the ‘meat and two veg’ family members hence my doing the half and half version as an interim.

Can anyone recommend a recipe for me to follow or just tell me what to do?
I’m not overly confident in the kitchen; I do cook from scratch but usually follow a recipe blush
TIA

OP’s posts: |
SpaceOp Sun 10-Jan-21 10:35:33

I quite often add puy lentils to.bolognaise or stews. More for added nutrition than bulking up purposes though so probably dont add as much as you want to. I probably add about 1/2 cup or so. You do need to add a bit more liquid as the lentils absorb it.

Red lentils might be better for mince in larger amounts.

Happytodayhappytomorrow Sun 10-Jan-21 10:38:40

Thanks SpaceOp
I’ve found a recipe now (on BBCGoodfood) so I’m good to go smile

OP’s posts: |
FusionChefGeoff Sun 10-Jan-21 10:52:19

I would make sure you're adding plenty of beef stock cubes better still the 'intense' stock pots you can get - and maybe a dash of marmite and Worcester sauce - I find these 'omph' up the lentils.

Happytodayhappytomorrow Sun 10-Jan-21 12:23:01

thanks for the tip. I do sometimes put either marmite or Worcester sauce in my regular shepherds pie so I'll be sure to add something to this one.

OP’s posts: |
Pipandmum Sun 10-Jan-21 12:26:28

I just made Nigella's rapid ragu (from her Exoress book). Not a lot of lentils but I think a third lentils to two thirds meat would be better than half and half. Lentils can be a bit claggy and not quite the right texture which could put people off.

Meandyouandyouandme Sun 10-Jan-21 12:29:59

I make this one a lot, it’s very nice, can use normal potatoes as well.
www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/veggie-shepherds-pie-sweet-potato-mash/amp

Happytodayhappytomorrow Sun 10-Jan-21 16:29:50

Thanks for the extra posts.
I shall try the Nigella Ragu another day.

The other recipe looks nice but it’s all lentil; I’m looking for half lentil, half meat

OP’s posts: |
NannyR Sun 10-Jan-21 16:34:25

You can buy precooked green lentils in pouches (they are cheaper in aldi) which are ideal for adding to things like shepherd's pie. I use them to make veggie bolognese. Dried lentils are more economical, but slower to cook, if you are not used to cooking with lentils, the precooked ones might be easier to use.

Glastonbury2020 Mon 11-Jan-21 19:52:03

Tinned green lentils from Aldi. They keep their shape when cooked and have a bit of texture. They don't go to mush like the red ones do.

AnnaMagnani Mon 11-Jan-21 20:17:46

Half red lentils, uncooked, half meat. The red tend to disappear so it's not as obvious that the meat has been cut back.

That and upping the veg content - packing with carrots, leeks, celery when you start.

Happytodayhappytomorrow Tue 12-Jan-21 10:41:00

thanks for the posts. I use red lentils regularly in curries - I'd just never out in a shepherd's pie before.

I did half and half, mince and red lentils, in the end (plus carrots, celery, onion, garlic, peas) and with a potato and sweet potato topping; I had three clean plates so it definitely gets the green light.
I'll gradually adjust the ratio.
Or maybe try a quorn or soya mince/lentils mix. Might that work?

OP’s posts: |
Snowpaw Tue 12-Jan-21 13:30:10

The tinned lentils are really easy - a better texture I think than red lentils. I use them to make a fully lentil only version but it tastes meaty by adding in Bisto Best beef gravy to the sauce, it’s delicious!
Cook finely chopped onions, carrots and celery. Grate mushrooms and add them in. Garlic, slosh of red wine, plenty of white and black pepper, few herbs, couple of tins of rinsed lentils, couple of tbsps gravy power and enough water to get it the consistency you want. It’s absolutely delicious and satisfies my carnivore partner

Happytodayhappytomorrow Wed 13-Jan-21 07:47:17

thanks Snowpaw. I'll try that version too.

OP’s posts: |
Mumof3dogs Wed 13-Jan-21 07:55:56

I love this one - as does my 3 year old granddaughter

https://www.waitrose.com/home/recipes/recipe_directory/c/cottage-pie-withcauliflowercheesetopping.html

dementedma Wed 13-Jan-21 08:06:24

I just chuck a good handful or two of red lentils into the mix and a splash more liquid and it seems to work.

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