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Life of

The best thing about dark winter's nights? Comfort food.

Make the most of your evening with the ultimate (and iconic) shepherd's pie recipe from The Ivy

'What makes our version of this classic pie stand out is
that it’s actually a cross between a shepherd’s pie and a
cottage pie, since we use both beef and lamb to make it', say the chefs at The Ivy, West Street.

The famous menu staple has long been a stalwart of the Soho institution - but now, you can recreate a bit of their comforting magic at home.

Ingredients (serves 4)

2 Tbsp olive oil
300g lean beef mince, preferably fromthe rib
300g lean lamb mince
(ground lamb)
3 shallots, peeled
150 g button mushrooms
1 large carrot, peeled
3 sprigs of thyme, leaves picked
1 Tbsp tomato puree
150ml red wine
200g can chopped tomatoes

1 Tbsp plain flour
3 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
350ml veal stock
(you can buy veal stock from good supermarkets – if you can’t find it, use beef or chicken stock)
3 sprigs of oregano, leaves picked and chopped
Sea salt and freshly ground
black pepper


800g floury potatoes, such as King Edward or Maris Piper
100g unsalted butter
2–3 Tbsp double cream

The Ivy, West Street Shepherd’s Pie

1. Heat a frying pan with 1 Tbsp of the oil until smoking hot, add the meat and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently until the meat has browned. Pour off the excess liquid, put the meat in a dish and set aside until the rest of the ingredients are ready.

2. Finely chop the shallots, mushrooms and carrot and tip into the pan with another 1 Tbsp oil. Gently sweat the vegetables with the thyme for about 8 minutes until tender but not coloured.

3. Return the meat to the pan, add the tomato puree and cook for about 5 minutes before adding the red wine and chopped tomatoes. Cook for a further 10 minutes, then add the flour and mix thoroughly.

4. Add the Worcestershire sauce and stock. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 45 minutes until the meat is tender and the sauce has thickened.

5. Add the chopped oregano, season with salt and pepper and add more Worcestershire sauce if required, then spoon into an ovenproof dish (or 4 individual little dishes).
Set aside.

6. Peel and cut the potatoes into evenly sized pieces. Cook in a pan of boiling salted water for about 20 minutes until tender. Drain and return to the pan over a gentle heat to remove any excess moisture. Using a masher or a potato ricer, thoroughly mash the potatoes, then mix them with the butter and cream and season to taste.

7. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 350°F.

Top the mince with the mashed potato (you can pipe this if you have the time), put the dish on a baking sheet and into the oven. Cook for about 30 minutes until the potatoes are a nice golden colour and the filling is piping hot.

The Ivy restaurants will be reopening on Wednesday 2nd December