The potato topping means that once this goes into the oven too, you're free to do whatever needs doing or to simply relax for half hour too.
For this version I make a quick roux and add a little white wine but if you're short on time, you can make a sauce very quickly by gently frying the onions and garlic in a little oil, then adding 2-3 tablespoons of creme fraiche plus the tarragon which gives a really lovely creamy finish.
I serve with whatever vegetables I have to hand.
- Leftover roast chicken or some cooked chicken pieces
- 100g mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons frozen peas
- 1 onion
- 1 clove garlic
- 1.5 tsp dried tarragon
- 1 tablespoon salted butter
- 1 tablespoon plain flour
- 100ml milk (I use semi skimmed)
- 2 tablespoons white wine
- 200g potatoes
- 20g grated hard cheese (Cheddar or Parmesan is pefect)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
Firstly peel and wash the potatoes then place on to boil in some lightly salted water. Bring to the boil then simmer for fifteen to 20 minutes, until a fork would easily go through and they are ready to mash.
Whilst the potatoes are cooking shred the chicken and slice the mushrooms and place to one side. Also place the oven on to pre-heat at around 180 degrees.
Finely slice the onion and mince the garlic and add to a pan in a tiny bit of butter to soften. Next add the mushrooms and cook for about 30 seconds, turning them over with a wooden spoon. Now remove this mixture and place into a small bowl.
In the same pan melt the butter and once melted, add in the flour a little at a time, constantly stirring to create a smooth consistency.
Once all the flour has been absorbed, add the milk a little at a time and stir the whole time too, until all has been added and the sauce begins to take shape. Add the wine at this point and cook gently for five minutes.
Return the chicken and mushooms to the sauce and place the peas in too and stir to ensure the sauce coats everything nicely. Remove from the heat to mash the potatoes.
Drain the potatoes and shake in a colander then place back into the saucepan and return to the heat for a few seconds, giving the pan a little gentle shake to remove any remaining water.
Now add the olive oil and mash. You want it thick and fluffy and to keep a bit of it's shape so try and refrain from adding milk or butter. Once mashed, season the potatoes with salt and black pepper.
Now place the chicken and mushroom mixture into a small pie plate or dish and try to evenly distribute.
Spoon the mash on top and use the back of the spoon to smooth down. Then use a fork to make track lines, as you would with a shepherd’s pie. Then finally grate on the little bit of cheese just to help to brown the top and give one final delicious touch.
Place the dish onto a baking tray and then into the oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve with your choice of vegetables and a glass of the white wine you used in the sauce. Enjoy!