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Halloween’s “Coffyn” alias Shepherd’s pie


What a name for a dish, spooky Halloween is on its way. It’s just a simple freebie soon to come : our very English, very own, family’s Shepherd’s pie recipe! With the walking staffs we were on the subject of the shepherds anyway and being married to an old fashioned Englisman, loving traditions and the good old “grub”, I thought to give away our family recipe for this lovely winterdish, bearing such a suitable name for this season.  

Just to know, the English make a big difference between the “Shepherd’s pie” and the “Cottage pie”. A “Shepherd’s pie” uses “minced mutton” as my husband would say (lamb) whereas a “Cottage pie” has minced beef in it.

Imagine a lovely cottage and your eyes wander off to those lovely old fashioned shingles on the roof, so of course in the cottage-dish, you serve sliced potatoes layered on top, pretending to be shingles. The Shepherd’s pie on the other hand, will serve you mashed potatoes on top.

Now for those of you that have no clue what this dish consists of, it’s super easy and tasty: a pastry crust and leftover ingredients, layered on top of each other. In medieval times long before the shepherd’s time, they made pockets with minced meat and vegetables. A cheap and quick way to still the family’s hunger.


“ Halloween’s coffyn “ refers to the original recipes you find in very old books: the mashed potatoes were then also lined at the bottom of the dish, to form a crust called a “coffyn”.

Veggie alert:  Replace the meat by quorn / seitan mince (don’t use Worcestershire sauce as it is based on anchofish ) and make your own special dish in your very own lovely oven dish. Believe me this is always my excuse to go hunting for another, very old-fashioned, oven dish on the flea markets!

Getting the Halloween spooky atmosphere…


Ready… ok catch this freebie in one of my next posts:Shepherd’s pie à la