For the lentil sauce
For the topping
- STEP 1
To make the sauce, heat 50g butter in a pan, then gently fry 2 chopped onions, 4 diced carrots, 1 chopped head of celery and 4 finely chopped garlic cloves for 15 mins until soft and golden.
- STEP 2
Turn up the heat, add 200g sliced chestnut mushrooms, then cook for 4 mins more.
- STEP 3
Stir in 2 bay leaves and 1 tbsp dried thyme, then add 500g green lentils. Pour over 100ml red wine and 1.7l vegetable stock – it’s important that you do not season with salt at this stage.
- STEP 4
Simmer for 40-50 mins until the lentils are very soft.
- STEP 5
Season to taste, take off heat, then stir in 3 tbsp tomato purée.
- STEP 6
While the lentils are cooking, tip 2kg floury potatoes into a pan of water, then boil for about 15 mins until tender. Drain well, mash with 85g butter and 100ml milk, then season with salt and pepper.
- STEP 7
To assemble the pies, divide the lentil mixture between all the dishes that you are using, then top with mash.
- STEP 8
Scatter over 50g grated cheddar and freeze for up to two months or if eating that day, heat oven to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5, then bake for 30 mins until the topping is golden.