This is an adaptation of the Shepherd’s Pot Pie from Forks Over Knives. Which is itself essentially a replica of the WWII “Woolton Pie,” a recipe named after Lord Woolton who was in charge of rationing, and the consequent reduction in the consumption of meat and dairy in the UK. It was not a popular dish to foist on a population dealing not only with war but also with rationing, but this version redeems itself with more veg and some additional flavour.
The attraction of this was clear once I’d made it – I hadn’t used arrowroot in anything other than baking before, and since I’m a dismal baker, hadn’t ever really thought of using it again. However, the combination of arrowroot and soy milk creates a particular emulsion which exactly mimics the texture or mouthfeel of a high-fat, high-salt commercial pie filling.
It makes enough to serve 8, with a few portions of mixture left over which could be a pasta sauce or a separate dish.
2 lbs white potatoes
1 large yellow onions, finely diced
3 large carrots, diced
2 sticks celery, chopped
2 courgettes (zucchini), chopped
About a cup of broccoli florets
A good shake of frozen peas
Another good shake of frozen broad beans
1 large can sweetcorn, drained
6 tbsp arrowroot powder
1 litre unsweetened soy milk
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
Black pepper to taste
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp dried mixed herbs
Chives to garnish (optional)
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Peel (if needed), chop and boil the potatoes ready for mashing – about 10 minutes.
While they boil, soften the onion, carrot and celery in a little bit of water, just enough to stop them sticking. Once soft, add the courgette, broccoli, beans, peas and corn.
Cook them for about another 5 minutes, and while they cook, mix the arrowroot powder with the milk, 1tbsp at a time, to form a paste. Keep adding the milk until the arrowroot is mixed into about 250ml of milk with no lumps. Set aside 50ml or so of the milk to mash the potatoes. Add the milk / arrowroot mixture to the veg, followed by the rest of the milk, the nutritional yeast, black pepper, white pepper, nutmeg and herbs. Let it come to a boil and simmer until it thickens. Don’t do what I did and get distracted as it will stick on the bottom!
Pour the mixture into an ovenproof dish. I had quite a bit leftover which I’ve frozen – I don’t know how well it will freeze but we’ll find out. Top with the mashed potato and bake for about 50 minutes until browned on the top and bubbling.
Serve with greens – we had sprouts and leeks!