Variations on a variation of a theme……

Sweet potato and polenta 'cottage pie'

Busy, busy busy. I’ve been busy.

Blogging about food, fun as it is, but doesn’t pay the bills so work comes first I’m afraid. Getting back late every night means sticking to tried and trusted faithfuls for me and so I had nothing particularly blogable (some may say I don’t anyway 😉 ).

I did however have a hankering for a shepherd’s/cottage pie midweek and some lovely leftover venison from the roast I made on Sunday. A plan was forming. I remembered a very nice dish of braised venison at an Italian restaurant recently and thought about varying the theme a bit. I had some sweet potatoes left over and, brilliantly, I thought to myself, some polenta.

I made a simple, but rich stew from the left over venison. I didn’t make it from a recipe, nor did I make a note of any quantities, but it was a standard affair of red wine, mirepoix and beef stock, with added diced swede and baby carrots. I actually made it the night before I used it, it’s always better that way.

I made two cottage pies (as  I suppose they must be) one topped with mashed sweet potato, the other with a fairly wet polenta.

The sweet potato was simply mashed with butter and some thyme, but to the polenta I added some taleggio cheese. I used a couple of bread tins to split the venison and topped each with the polenta and sweet potato respectively.

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To both, I scattered on the grated end of a block of parmesan. It really was a great way to use up the fridge contents. I baked them at 180C, or 350F for about 20 minutes and turned on the oven grill element for the last ten to get a nice crust.

They were both very good, I preferred the polenta which I thought was a bit of a triumph to be honest, but then, I really like polenta….

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18 thoughts on “Variations on a variation of a theme……

  1. Both topping ideas look fab, the combination of polenta and taleggio would be a big winner for me. Will give this a go next time I mince some venison. Know what you mean about too busy to blog, I’m struggling at the moment, but can’t complain as I have been grazing my way round London these last few days 🙂

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