Cottage cake

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Cottage cake

This cottage pie is pure comfort food and is not far from the well-known and appreciated shepherd's pie. I used ground turkey, tossed in some Italian herbs, Marsala wine, and some Parmesan cheese to make it noticeable, but other than that, this is a pretty basic recipe. A little diced zucchini and yellow squash fits in very well here if you have any on hand. I didn't, so we're working with the ever humble duo of peas and carrots.

The mashed potato crust in this cottage pie is topped with Parmesan cheese, but you can use whichever cheese you prefer. Cheddar, Jack or Fontina … although I'm not sure how mozzarella would work for you. I like Parmesan best, because it keeps this cottage pie on the lighter side.

If you're wondering why I haven't been posting as much lately (and thanks to those of you who have noticed!), I lost my routine after the house remodel and am trying to get back. My father was sick on top of that, so I was spending time there with him. And work, work has been super busy and I went on a short business trip that was really exciting. And now … I'm preparing to go through another type of remodel. In a couple of months, Delicious Happens will have a new look. This site will be redesigned and I will revisit old posts to correct recipes to make them easier to print. I'm really looking forward to this!


For the stew

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 5 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 pounds ground turkey or chicken meat

  • 1-1 / 2 cups yellow onions, diced

  • 10 minced garlic cloves

  • 1 cup carrots, diced

  • 1 cup frozen peas

  • 1 1-inch piece of Parmesan cheese

  • 2 tablespoons of tomato paste

  • 3 tablespoons gluten-free all-purpose flour

  • 1-1 / 2 teaspoons dried rosemary

  • 2 teaspoons of dried oregano

  • 2 teaspoons dried basil

  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme

  • 1 tablespoon of dried parsley

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 1/4 cup Marsala wine

  • 1-3 / 4 cups low-sodium broth or chicken broth

For the garlic mashed potatoes

  • 2 1/2 pounds red potatoes, leave 3 or 4 of them unpeeled, quartered

  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced

  • 1/2 teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 3/4 cup whole milk

  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • pinch of salt

  • freshly ground black pepper to taste


  1. Grease a 2-quart baking dish with a small amount of olive oil.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add ground beef and cook 10 to 12 minutes or until golden brown, breaking into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Transfer the meat to a plate and reserve.
  3. Add a tablespoon of butter and a tablespoon of olive oil to the pan. Add onion and cook for about 5 minutes or until smooth and lightly caramelized. Add garlic and cook for about 30 seconds to one minute. Add carrots and cook 3 to 4 minutes or until slightly tender.
  4. Return the ground beef to the skillet.
  5. Add tomato paste and mix well, stirring for about a minute.
  6. Add Marsala wine and stir for another minute.
  7. Add the flour and stir for another minute.
  8. Add the peas, herbs, bay leaf, stock, and 1-inch piece of Parmesan cheese. Bring to a simmer and cook until sauce is slightly thick.
  9. Reduce the heat to a simmering sauce, cover, and continue cooking for about 20 minutes and the wedge of Parmesan cheese has melted and mixed with the sauce.
  10. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  11. Transfer the stew to the baking dish. Place the mashed potatoes on top of the meat mixture. Smooth the top with the back of a wooden spoon. Sprinkle 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese over the potatoes. Place the baking dish on a baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes or until the cheese is golden and the sides are bubbly.

For the garlic mashed potatoes

  1. Fill a large pot with water and add the potatoes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 20-25 minutes or until potatoes are tender when tested with a fork. Remove from the heat and drain well.
  2. While the potatoes are cooking, in a small saucepan add the milk, olive oil, 1 tablespoon of butter and garlic. When the milk is hot (be careful not to scald the milk) add 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and stir until melted. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  3. Grind the potatoes with the heated garlic milk mixture, adding the milk little by little to obtain the desired consistency. Add salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

cottage cake

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