When you think cozy and comforting food potatoes are probably right at the top of the list, right? We love any kind of potato at my house, but there’s something about cottage pie that just makes it feel really special even though this is supposedly a very humble dish. This fusion recipe for inside out German cottage pie combines the best of German and English cooking for a baked dinner that’s got that cottage pie feeling but with a lot less work.
Instead of spending time on a complicated pattern of mashed potatoes for the top of the pie, this recipe calls for the potatoes on the bottom. In the German fashion these don’t have milk, but do have dill weed for a more traditional flavor. Made into balls, the trick to rolling the potatoes is to rub some vegetable oil on your hands before shaping them.
These little balls become nests when you hollow out with the center with a cup. Then fill them with a delicious beef sauce thickened with tomatoes and flavored with smoked paprika.
In addition to the filling there’s also a bit of cheese that goes into each hollow before the sauce (and a little on top, too). After these are baked to perfection you have 6 servings of a hearty take on the standard meat and potatoes- with a bit of European flair.
This recipe requires no special tools, skills, or ingredients. It’s just good, old, delicious home cooking.
Inside Out German Cottage Pie
Makes 6 servings
25m prep time
52m cook time
- 2 lbs Russet potatoes, peeled and chopped
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 onion, diced
- Salt and pepper to taste, plus extra for potatoes
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes (undrained)
- 1/2 teaspoon dried dill
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, plus extra for greasing
- 1/2 cup Parmesan or Romano cheese
- Add potatoes to a medium pot. Fill with just enough water to cover them and generously salt the water. Boil potatoes for 10-15 minutes or until fork tender. Drain and set aside. Preheat oven to 400˚F.
- In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat. Add onion to the pan and sauté for 10 minutes or until the onion pieces begin to turn translucent. Add in beef and sauté until browned (5-7 minutes). Add in salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and tomatoes and cook for 10 minutes or until thickened significantly.
- Mash potatoes with the butter and dill, Add salt and pepper to taste. Grease hands with some oil and roll potatoes into 6 balls. Place balls in 9”x13” baking dish. Make an indent in each one with the bottom of a flat mug or cup. Sprinkle cheese into each hollow. Pour beef sauce into each hollow and top with more cheese.
- Bake for 10 minutes or until cheese is completely melted and beginning to brown.
Recipe adapted from Recipe adapted from Essen Rezepte.