"But surely such an English classic can't be made without meat?" I hear you cry. Yes it can, and i'd even venture as far to say that you couldn't actually tell it was meat free either, thanks to my new trusty friend Quorn mince. Now, I must be honest here, and admit that there have been many years when I have avoided using Quorn, but now I can't see myself not having a bag in the freezer. It even cooks from frozen, simply add it to your sauce when you are ready and warm through for ten minutes. Plus it is gluten - free, which is a hard thing to come by when searching the vegetarian options at the supermarket. I should really set up my own gluten-free vegetarian brand and rake in the big bucks!
To make the sauce even richer I like to add a tin of baked beans (also to entice fussy children) and used passata for a change, but feel free to add whatever beans you have available or tinned tomatoes rather than passata if you prefer. You can even go wild and add some chopped mushrooms if you fancy, It really is that versatile.
500g Quorn mince
1 onion (finely chopped)
1 large carrot (peeled and finely chopped)
2 chopped garlic cloves
500g Passata (Any leftover sauce can be frozen)
1tbsp gluten-free Worcestershire sauce
1tbsp tomato puree
1 tin of baked beans
1tsp of Oregano
750g potatoes peeled and chopped
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6
2. Add the potatoes to a large pan with boiling water. Cook until softened. Drain the potatoes and mash with the butter ( I also add a splash of milk to make it really creamy).
3.Heat a tbsp of oil in a large frying pan and gently cook the onion and carrot until softened. Add the garlic and cook for a few minutes.
4. Add the passata, tomato puree and baked beans, and heat gently. Then add the oregano and gluten-free Worcester sauce. Allow the sauce to cook gently for about fifteen minutes.
5. Add the Quorn mince and cook until heated through (approximately 10 minutes).
6. Tip the mince mixture into a large ovenproof dish. Top with the mashed potato and use a fork to add a texture to the top. This also adds a lovely crunch.
7. Cook in the oven for about 25 minutes until the potatoes are golden brown.