Sheperdless pie

Serves: 4 -6, filling one roughly 30 by 20cm pie dish


3 leeks, chopped on the diagonal roughly 1cm wide
2 cloves of garlic, crushed or finely chopped
2 knobs of coconut oil or organic, grass fed butter
2 courgettes, thinly sliced
1 tin of organic plum tomatoes
A handful of cavalo nero, chopped into 1cm ribbons, or 2 handfuls spinach or kale
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves, plus extra to garnish
4 large plum vine tomatoes, quartered
A large bunch of basil
Salt and pepper
2 heads of cauliflower, chopped
2 tbsps tahini
2 tsp Dijon mustard
3 tbsps finely grated parmesan (optional)


Preheat your oven to 200°c. Boil the cauliflower until soft, 5 to 8 minutes. Drain and return to the pan. Mash the cauliflower with a stick blender or potato masher until smooth. Add the tahini, Dijon mustard, salt & pepper. Stir together and adjust seasoning if necessary. Keep the cauliflower warm. 

Place the leeks and one knob of the oil or butter in a large, deep frying pan over a medium heat and toss them in the fat as it melts allowing them to brown a little. When they have started to brown add about 50ml of water so they continue to soften without burning. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes, before adding your garlic and cooking for another minute.

Add your courgettes and the second knob of oil or butter, tossing to make sure they get a little oil coating. Cook until they begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, breaking them up slightly with a wooden spoon or spatula and boil for about 5 minutes, giving the pan a stir every so often.

When your mix has gained heat and is bubbling nicely add the cavalo nero, fresh tomatoes and thyme and stir everything in. Cook for two minutes or so to wilt the cavalo nero slightly. Taste and season to your liking. 

Stir in the basil leaves before filling your dish. Roughly flatten the surface and spread over your cauliflower mash. Sprinkle over a few more thyme leaves and add some black pepper and/or parmesan if you wish.

Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the tomato has started to bubble up the sides and the whole thing is warm right through. Serve while still warm.

Alexandra Dudley

Artist, author and entrepreneur Alexandra is a storyteller at heart. Drawing on childhood memories of moments in her mother’s kitchen, her debut cookbook Land and Sea (published by Orion) has received widespread shining reviews. Offering advice on using the whole ingredient Land and Sea brings sustainable eating to the table in true flavour and style.

Alexandra also offers private cooking classes or parties and caters for private events. 

Instagram: @alexandradudley
Twitter: @alexdudleycooks 

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