Tag Archives: Cottage Pie

3 Easy Recipes that Children will Love!

In our brand new cookbook, Dairy Diary Favourites, which celebrates 35 years of the Dairy Diary, we share some brilliant recipes for child-friendly food.


Homemade Fish Fingers

Homemade Fish Fingers

  • Servings: 8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 144 per portion
Fat 6g (0.6g sat) per portion
Suitable for freezing


  • Thick cod or haddock fillet 250g (9oz), skinned Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Plain flour 2 tbsp Egg 1, beaten
  • Dry white breadcrumbs 110g (4oz)
  • Vegetable oil for deep-fat frying
  • Broccoli, baked beans and ketchup to serve (optional)


  1. Cut the fish into eight strips and season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the flour in a shallow dish, put the beaten egg in another dish and the breadcrumbs in another.
  2. Dust each fish finger in the flour, dip into the egg and then toss in the breadcrumbs, making sure they are completely coated.
  3. Heat the vegetable oil in a deep-fat fryer or deep wide saucepan. Carefully lower the fish fingers into the hot oil. You may need to do this in batches.
  4. Cook for 2–3 minutes until the crumb coating is crisp and golden.
  5. Drain on kitchen paper and serve with beans, broccoli and a squirt of ketchup, if you like.

Cook’s tip
To check that the oil is hot enough, use a cook’s thermometer – it should read 180-190°C/350-375°F.
Or, drop a square of bread into the oil; if the oil bubbles around it immediately the oil is hot enough.


Cottage Pie

Cottage Pie with Baked Beans

  • Servings: 2 adults & 3 children
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 659 per portion
Fat ?31g (13g sat) per portion
Suitable for freezing


  • Olive oil 1 tbsp
  • Onion 1 large, peeled and finely chopped
  • Carrots 2 large, peeled and cut into small dice
  • Lean minced beef 500g (1lb 2oz) Beef stock 150ml (¼ pint)
  • Mixed dried herbs 1 tbsp
  • Potatoes 900g (2lb), peeled and quartered
  • Butter 25g (1oz)
  • Baked beans 415g can
  • Egg 1 small, beaten with 1 tbsp water to glaze (optional)
  • Peas to serve (optional)


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan, add the onion and carrots and cook for about 5 minutes until softened.
  2. Add the beef to the pan and continue cooking until the meat is lightly browned. Stir in the stock and herbs and bring to the boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, boil the potatoes in water for 15-20 minutes until cooked.
  4. Preheat the oven to 190°C/170°fan/Gas 5. Drain the potatoes and mash with butter. Spoon half the beef mixture into a 1.25 litre (2 pint) baking dish, then add the baked beans and the remaining beef. Cover with mashed potatoes, smooth and mark into swirls with a fork. Brush with egg, if using.
  5. Place on a baking tray and cook for 45 minutes or until browned. Serve immediately with peas, if you like.

Cook’s tip
You could make this earlier in the day and reheat when required. Or spoon into individual foil containers, cool, wrap in clingfilm, label and freeze ahead. Defrost in the fridge overnight and reheat a portion for 30 minutes.


Candy Rice Pudding

Candy Rice Pudding

  • Servings: 2 adults & 3 children
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Calories 179 per portion
Fat 6g (2.8g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians


  • Milk 600ml (1 pint)
  • Pudding rice 50g (2oz)
  • Caster sugar 2 tsp
  • Caramac candy bar 50g (2oz)


  1. Put the milk, rice and sugar in a pan. Bring to the boil, stirring. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes until the rice is cooked, stirring occasionally.
  2. Break up the candy bar and stir into the rice. Serve hot or cold.

Cook’s tip
Vary the chocolate bar; add your child’s favourite – diced Crunchy bar, Milky Bar or Mars Bar could also be used.

Dairy Diary Favourites cookbook

To celebrate the 35th anniversary of the iconic Dairy Diary we have created a collection of the top 100 recipes from the past 35 years.

From children’s teas and quick midweek meals to delicious lunches and decadent desserts, there’s something in this book to tempt everyone.

Click here to find out more.












Recipe of the Week: Spiced Cottage Pie

Spiced Cottage Pie

A delicious twist on the ubiquitous cottage pie. This fabulous recipe is cheap to make and perfect to freeze.


Spiced Cottage Pie

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Calories 737 per portion
Fat 25g (10.8g sat) per portion
Suitable for freezing


  • Sunflower oil 1 tbsp
  • Minced beef 500g (1lb 2oz)
  • Onion 1, peeled and chopped
  • Medium hot curry powder 2 tbsp
  • Carrot 150g (5oz), diced
  • Red lentils 150g (5oz)
  • Beef stock 600ml (1 pint)
  • Tomato purée 1 tbsp
  • Sultanas 50g (2oz)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Potatoes 680g (1½lb), peeled and cut into chunks
  • Butter 50g (2oz) Milk 4 tbsp
  • Ground turmeric ¼ tsp
  • Cooked frozen peas to serve (optional)


  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan over a medium heat and fry the mince and onion, stirring and breaking up the mince, for about 5 minutes until it is evenly browned.
  2. Stir in the curry powder and carrot, cook 1 minute and then mix in the lentils. Pour in the stock, tomato purée, sultanas and seasoning and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally until the lentils are soft.
  3. Meanwhile, put the potatoes into a saucepan with just enough lightly salted water to cover them. Cover with the lid and bring the water to the boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes until the potatoes are tender.
  4. Drain the potatoes, return them to the pan with half the butter and the milk and turmeric and season with salt and pepper. Mash well, adding the milk as needed to make a soft spoonable mash.
  5. Preheat the grill to hot. Spoon the mince mixture into an ovenproof dish, cover with the potato and fork the mash into an even layer. Dot the remaining butter over the top and grill for 5–10 minutes until browned. Serve with peas, if you like.

Cook’s tip
Leftover lentils can be used to make a delicious, filling soup. Cook 110g (4oz) lentils with 1 chopped potato, carrot, onion and parsnip (or any other leftover veg you fancy) and 900ml (1½ pints) stock very gently for 1 hour. Purée with a stick blender before you serve.


Fantastic Food For Less cookbook


This recipe comes from Fantastic Food for Less.

The clever recipes in this cookbook show you how to cook fantastic food using good quality, affordable ingredients with minimum waste.

Order your copy of Fantastic Food for Less.

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Quick Cottage Pie

The perfect comfort food in an unbelievable time!

Quick Cottage Pie from the Good Food, Fast: Dairy CookbookTime 15 minutes
Calories per portion 736 Kcal
Fat per portion 34g
of which saturated 9.3g
Serves 2
Suitable for freezing

Beef mince 250g (9oz)
Onion 1 small, peeled and chopped
Baked beans in tomato sauce 415g can
Worcestershire sauce 2 tbsp
Dried mixed herbs 1 tbsp
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Chilled flavoured mashed potato 450g pack

1 Heat a large, dry frying pan over a high heat. Add the beef mince and onion and cook, stirring to break up the meat, for 3–4 minutes, until the meat is browned.

2 Stir in the baked beans, Worcestershire sauce, dried mixed herbs, some seasoning and a good dash of water. Simmer rapidly for 3–4 minutes, until thickened and then tip the pie filling into a deep 1.25 litre (2 pint) baking dish.

3 Meanwhile, preheat the grill to hot. Heat the mashed potato according to the pack instructions, spoon on top of the mince and rough up the surface. Pop under the hot grill for a few minutes, until golden and bubbling.

Cook’s Tip
Supermarkets sell flavoured mash, such as colcannon, in the chilled food section. Use plain mash, if you prefer.

Recipe taken from the Good Food, Fast: Dairy Cookbook.

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