(without the sheep, obv)
By George Dryden | Serves 3-4
For the filling
- 3 tbsp coconut oil (or more if needed to prevent sticking)
- 2 medium-sized leeks, finely chopped
- 3 sticks celery
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tbsp each of dried mint, basil and thyme
- 1 tbsp celery salt
- ½ tbsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
- 1 ½ tbsp. dark miso
- 2 tbsp Tamari
- 1 tbsp Liquid aminos (Braggs or Marigold)
- 2 tbsp vegan Worcester sauce, e.g. Biona organic
- Generous splash Big Tom spicy tomato juice (several, as needed)
- 1 bag vegan mince of your choice (e.g. Linda McCartney or Meet the Alternative Beef Mince)
- 40g each red and green lentils, UNCOOKED, rinsed and drained
- 6 shitake mushrooms, roughly chopped
- 1 can chopped tomatoes
- 1 can plum tomatoes
For the topping
- 3 medium-sized white potatoes, peeled and chopped into 2-inch chunks
- 1 large sweet potato, peeled and chopped into 2-inch chunks
- 125ml carton soya cream
- Generous glug truffle oil
- 2 tbsp in total dried herbs of your choice, e.g. tarragon, mint, basil
- Small handful of finely chopped watercress
- Small, sweet tomatoes, sliced
- Melted coconut oil
- Pumpkin seeds
- Pre-heat oven to 180.
- Steam white potatoes and sweet potatoes until cooked (about 15 minutes for white potato, 10 minutes for sweet potato (stagger the cooking times)
- Set aside in a bowl and cover.
- Melt the coconut oil on a low heat, then add the leeks, and allow to soften, still over a low heat.
- Next, add the celery, and allow to soften.
- Add all herbs and spices: miso, tamari, aminos, Worcester Sauce, bay leaves, basil, mint, thyme, cayenne and celery seeds. Cook for a few minutes with the lid on. You may need to add a little more coconut oil if the mixture is sticking.
- Add the lentils, mix well, then add the vegan mince and mix together.
- Add a generous glug of Big Tom to prevent sticking, adding more as it is absorbed.
- Add the shitake mushrooms.
- Next, add the chopped tomatoes, followed by the tinned plum tomatoes. Roughly break down the whole tomatoes, but not so much that there are no large chunks remaining (this adds texture).
- Add more Big Tom to achieve a thick yet fluid consistency, like a bolognese.
- Simmer on a low heat for 3-5 minutes, covered, or until lentils are cooked. Make sure at this stage that there is enough liquid in the mixture, or the lentils will remain hard.
- Once lentils are soft, pour the mixture into a deep ceramic oven dish, leaving a generous gap at the top for the potato. Set aside.
- Add a the soya cream in stages to the set aside potato in the bowl, and a generous glug truffle oil (you can use olive oil if you prefer).
- Add the dried herbs of your choice, mix roughly with a spoon, then mash vigorously until lump-free. Add more cream if needed.
- Add finely chopped watercress and fold into the mixture, so evenly distributed.
- Top the filling in the oven dish with the potato, then cover with the sliced tomatoes and a sprinkling of pumpkin seeds.
- Gently melt some coconut oil and then brush over the top.
- Place in the centre of the oven, on a baking tray, for 30 minutes.
TIP: I always serve this with gently steamed petit pois, and a dollop of HP sauce on the side. (Throwback to childhood. It’s a thing.).
TIP: Any leftover topping or filling freezes really well, so you could have enough of both left for a smaller pie next time. Just defrost, assemble, and it’s done!