Cottage pie is a traditional English dish consisting of meat, vegetables, and gravy cooked in a creamy sauce. It is often served with mashed potatoes and peas.
Shepherd’s pie is a variation of cottage pie where the meat filling is replaced with lamb or mutton. The name comes from the fact that the dish was originally prepared in a cauldron placed inside a sheep’s pen.
Both dishes originated in England and are similar in appearance and taste. However, there are slight differences in their preparation and ingredients.
Differences Between Shepherd’s Pie and Cottage Pie
The main difference between these two dishes is the type of meat used to make them. In both cases, they consist of ground beef, but the meats differ:
In cottage pie recipe, the meat mixture is made out of minced beef; whereas shepherds’ pies use lamb mince instead.
The differences between cottage pie are how the meat mixture is seasoned before cooking. While cottage pie tends to be more heavily spiced than shepherds’, which have less spices added.
Another important distinction is the way the food is cooked. Shepherds’ pies are baked while traditional cottage pie is steamed. This makes for a slightly different texture when eating the foods.
Ingredients Used To Make Both Dishes
There are some common ingredients found in both types of pies. These include flour, butter, milk, eggs, salt, pepper, herbs, onions, carrots, celery, mushrooms, tomatoes, and other seasonings.
However, you will find certain variations in each recipe depending on the meat base that is being used.
For example, if using lamb mince, then you may need to add extra garlic, thyme, rosemary, sage, bay leaves, etc., as well as additional seasoning.
The history of cottage pie
Cottage pie is a traditional English dish consisting of meat, vegetables, and gravy cooked in a cream-based sauce.
It is often served with mashed potatoes and peas.
Shepherds pie is a variant of this dish where the meat filling is replaced by lamb or mutton.
Both dishes originate in England and are similar in appearance and taste.
But there are few differences in their preparation and ingredients.
In cottage pie, meat is mostly minced beef and it’s very lightly spiced while shepherd’s pies use lamb mince which has little spice added.
Another big difference is how the food is cooked.
Cottages pies are steamed whilst Shepherds pies are baked.
This gives a bit different texture when eaten.
There are also minor differences to look at like the amount of flour used to cook them.
Version of cottage pie
A number of variants exist on the basic theme of cottage pie. Some examples include:
• Beef & Onion – A classic combination of cooked beef and onion.
• Chicken & Mushroom – Another popular choice.
• Cheese & Tomato – An alternative version featuring cheese and tomato.
• Lamb & Mint – A modern twist on an old favourite.
• Vegetable – A vegetarian option. Vegetable mixture.
• Fish – A seafood-based take on the original.
• Seafood – A fishy spin
How to Cook Cottage Pies
Cottage pie can be prepared either stovetop or oven-cooked. The former method requires that the pie be placed directly over medium heat until browned.
Once done, remove from the heat and allow it to cool completely. Then cover and refrigerate overnight. Alternatively, bake your cottagerie in the oven according to package instructions.
Cooking times vary greatly depending upon the size of your pie pan. If baking, it should only require about 20 minutes per side. However, if preparing them stovetop, they usually take longer due to their larger surface area.
How to make Shepherd’s Pie
Shepherd’s pie is similar to cottage pie but differs in several ways. It contains more vegetables than meat and is made up of ground lamb rather than layer of ground beef.
In addition, it does not contain any potatoes. Instead, mashed cauliflower is used instead.
To prepare this type of pie, first combine all the ingredients except the cauliflower into a large bowl.
Mix thoroughly so that everything is evenly distributed throughout the mixture. Next, pour the mixture into a greased 9×13 inch baking dish.
Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.
To serve, place some mashed cauliflower onto a plate and spread out slightly. Top with the baked pie mix and sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese. Serve immediately.
Why is a shepherd’s pie called a shepherd’s pie?
There are many theories as to why a shepherd’s pie is called a “shepherd’s” pie.
One theory suggests that the name comes from the fact that when the dish was originally created, sheep were being raised on farms near cities.
As such, these farmers would have needed someone who could tend to their animals during the day. This person was known as a “shepherd”.
Therefore, since he tended to his flock, people began calling him a “shepherd”, hence the name.
Another theory states that the term originated because the dish resembles a manger scene.
Since Jesus Christ was born in Bethlehem, the town of origin for the dish, it makes sense that the dish looks like a manger scene.
Is Shepherd’s pie Irish or English
While there has been much debate regarding whether Shepherd’s pie is actually Scottish or British, most agree that it is indeed an Irish dish.
There are two main reasons for this conclusion. First, the word “pie” itself means “pudding.” Second, the dish is traditionally served cold. Both characteristics point towards Ireland.
What do you think?. Did we get it right? Or did we miss something important? Please leave us a comment below!