Santa Fe-Style Cottage Pie with Red Chile-Mashed Potato Topping

  • Active Time 30m
  • Total Time 1h 25m

Serves 4 to 6

In this recipe, the classic English cottage pie is enlivened by a zingy (rather than plain) red chile topping. This recipe is downright delicious and a quick and easy way to feed hungry guests or family. WINE RECOMMENDATION: The zing of this recipe suggests a Spanish Red, preferably from the Rioja or Penedes regions. Alternatively, try a Beaujolais from France.


  • For Pie:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 2 leeks (green and white parts) sliced and chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 1 1/2 pounds lean high-quality ground beef
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 cup beef stock
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon mixed dried herbs, such as Herbes de Provence
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • For Topping:
  • 1 1/2 pounds potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (from 2 ears)
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure red chile powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon chopped cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon honey


TO PREPARE PIE: Heat the olive oil in a saucepan and sauté the garlic, onion, leeks and carrots over medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Add the beef and sauté for about 7 minutes longer, while stirring frequently, or until the beef is well browned on all sides. Season with salt and pepper. Add the flour and cook for 1 minute longer. Add the stock, wine, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce and dried herbs. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the peas and remove from the heat.

Transfer the mixture to a large ovenproof glass baking dish, preferably 9 or 10 inches square, and let cool while preparing the mashed potatoes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

TO PREPARE TOPPING: Place the potatoes in a saucepan of salted water and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until tender. Drain and transfer to a mixing bowl. Meanwhile, in a sauté pan, melt the butter with the milk, bring to a boil, and add the garlic and corn. Sprinkle in the chile powder and stir. Strain the mixture, reserving the corn separately from the liquid. With an electric mixer (or with a wire whisk), whip the potatoes while drizzling in the reserved cooking liquid, adding a little more milk as needed. Stir in the reserved corn, the cilantro and honey and season with salt.

TO ASSEMBLE: With a fork, spread the mashed potatoes evenly over the beef mixture, making a ridged pattern on the top of the potatoes with the fork. Bake in the oven for 25 minutes. Place under the preheated broiler and broil the top of the potatoes until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving.

HELPFUL TIPS: Traditionally cottage and shepherd's pie are ideal recipes for using up leftover beef or lamb that is then minced, but you won't need an excuse like leftovers to make this dish with store-bought freshly ground beef. If you prefer, for a plainer topping, mash boiled potatoes with butter and milk and sprinkle in 1/2 cup of grated Cheddar cheese. Spread the potatoes over the beef and bake in the oven for 30 minutes.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Harper Collins. All rights reserved.

RecID 5251

nutrition information per serving

503 calories; 20g total fat; 55mg cholesterol; 203mg sodium; 47g carbohydrates; 6g fiber; 32g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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