Monday, May 23

Crispy potato topped lamb and and bean pie - and mandoline fears

Have you ever had an appliance or even tool that gives you the hee-bee-gee-bees?  For me, that is the mandoline.  My mother had an orange one in the eighties and I remember vividly her slicing her finger nearly half off with it and the blood - oh the blood.  I remember it being in the kitchen, but not being used.  Almost like an example of extreme caution: kitchens can be dangerous.

It was something like this:

When I saw the recipe for 'Crispy Potato topped lamb and lentil pie' in this month's Super Food Ideas I wanted to try it, and my food processor slicer has broken, and as much as the thought of slicing potatoes that thin seemed like good remedial therapy - I knew I had to face my fears.  I needed to buy that mandolin.   Many foodie friends of mine rave about theirs - and their fingers are still attached to the hands right?  I really should stop being a baby?  They must have moved on a bit with the technology right?

I thought about all the other things I could use it for.  Potato bake, batons, cheese.  Right-o.  I was ready to invest.   So I got myself a zyliss one.  It's pretty good actually, and no need to touch what your slicing, the guide you hold takes it all the way down to nothing.

Lastly, I need to disclose that this is NOT exactly the recipe at Superfood ideas - I adapted based on ingredients :)

  • 800g lamb mince (I minced 1.2kg of forequarter chops!)
  • 2 medium brown onions, diced
  • 2 tb oil
  • 2 x 400g diced tomatoes
  • 1 tin cannellini beans
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried herbs - or whatever you like from the garden (I used thyme, rosemary and parsley)
  • 1 beef stock cube
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 10 fresh beans, chopped
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • 2 tb tomato paste
  • 800g new potatoes, washed and sliced thinly

In a frypan or large saucepan heat the oil and add the brown onion and fry until transparent.  Add the lamb, bit by bit and brown also.

Whilst it is browning, chop up your herbs, I love having fresh herbs in the garden, and chopping them up and taking in their perfume makes me feel quite virtous!

Add the herbs, then the vegetables - fry off for about 3-4 minutes then add the beans - the whole tin including the water and then the beef cube and diced tomato.  Simmer for about another 5 or so minutes.

Then you can get using the mandoline!  See how the potato just fits in the top... that means I can hold the edges and away from those scary blades. It will work it's way down until there's no more potato... no pushing with fingers at all!
 And look how pretty they are... I didn't even bother peeling them...
 By now your lamb is all beautiful and stew like - so turn on your oven to 200 degrees c
Take the lamb off the stoves and transfer into an oven-proof dish.  Layer your potatoes how you wish.. I think this looks pretty don't you?  Cover with aluminium foil and bake in the oven for 40 minutes.

Then take off the foil and cook for a further 20 minutes - I like my potato nice and crispy - but you might not so just bake it until it's golden brown on top.

Serve!   In the words of Dora: Delizioso!

Do you have a fear of the mandoline or any other kitchen/house appliance?
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3 lovely comments:

Super Sarah on May 23, 2011 at 8:09 AM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

I love meals like this that are packed full of veggies! I don't have a fear of an appliance as such but there are definitely kitchen activities that fill we with horror. I faced one of those this weekend when I made pastry from scratch for a quiche, I blogged about it but can't figure out how to comment here using my wordpress blog. I always just use my old google blogspot login for ease.

Diminishing Lucy on May 23, 2011 at 8:27 AM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

Isn't that spooky. I recently had a Tupperware and had a lot of freebies - one of the items I chose was their mandolin. I have yet to try it...I too am a little fearful (as a result of too many sliced fingers in my catering youth...)

Not Quite Nigella on May 23, 2011 at 4:19 PM said... [Reply to this amazing comment]

The potato arrangement on top looks so pretty, like a flower! :D


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