What To Do With Leftover Bolognaise And A Ramekin

Instead of serving up last night’s bolognaise again, why not turn it into something completely unrecognizable? Instead of “leftovers”, let’s try something “new” and call it Cottage Pie.

Now I know that most of us who have left home more than a little while ago are probably quite adept at this conversion trick, but I keep thinking back to my first blog (very recently – please be patient with me) where I introduced easy meals in a ramekin. Cottage Pie is such an ideal dish for a ramekin, so I decided to re-visit the idea as this dinner dish is so versatile.

You can change each serve around to suit your family. Add some spice and heat for Mum and Dad. Serve with a warm and chunky piece of bread. Balance it out with any type of salad you like, or even a couple of slices of fruit for the kids (Fruit and Veg are in the same food group). Cottage Pie is one of the best hearty comfort foods you can get, and you can make the recipe as healthy or unhealthy as you need to.

Add pretty much any random food ingredients you can find rattling around the fridge or pantry. It’s a wonderful place to hide your sins.

Try to find:

  • Your left over bolognaise 😀
  • Potatoes to mash
  • Peas, carrot, corn, mushroom or other veg
  • Worcestershire sauce or beef stock
  • Spices of choice
  • Butter
  • Milk
  • Shallots or chives chopped finely
  • Grated cheese or diced feta
  • Bread roll or loaf
  • Salad of your choice

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Peel the potatoes, dice into 2cm cubes and place in boiling salted water for 10 minutes on medium heat until you can poke into them with a fork.

If you are using firm vegetables like fresh carrot, onion or celery, chop then fry and stir these in a lightly oiled frypan for a few minutes to soften.

Place only the bolognaise mince amount you will require into the pan, to reheat. Add your cooked vegetables to this now, and if using frozen or tinned vegetables, you can also add these now. This is the time to hide those sneaky vegetables. Add a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce or stock to intensify the flavour. Make sure it isn’t too runny. Gently heat through, stirring occasionally.

When your potatoes are ready, drain the water, add some butter, salt and pepper to preference and mash together. Keep mashing while adding a few dashes of milk, until it is firm and workable.

Lightly grease the ramekins and add your bolognaise mix to 2/3 full. Add the adult’s spices or chilli to the filling and stir through. Fill the remainder of the ramekin with the potato mash and peak or stripe it with a spoon, to help make a lovely crispy topper. Sprinkle with shallots, a little cheese and place ramekins in the oven on a baking tray, remembering which ones have the chilli.

You are really just uniformly heating the food through so it only needs to bake for 15 – 20 minutes.
If you like the potato topper to be brown and crispy, finish it under the grill.
Serve each cottage pie ramekin on a large plate with your toasted buttered bread, and creative salad.

A delicious and perfect winter warmer. And it looks nothing like last night’s bolognaise.

I have used the Maxwell & Williams Epicurious Black Ramekin 12 x 5cm,
on a Maxwell & Williams Caviar Granite High Rim Platform Plate 26.5cm

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