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calendar22 March 2016

Author: Gemma Pask

Budget recipe binder: Em’s Hearty Hotpot (Perfect for Easter!)

Budget recipe binder: Em’s Hearty Hotpot (Perfect for Easter!)

Em says: ‘I love Easter; my family always goes for a long walk on Good Friday. I’m not the biggest fan of walking but it’s the one day I make an effort, mainly because of what is waiting for us when we get home… my mum’s Lancashire Hotpot! Chunks of slow cooked lamb in a thick, tasty gravy, topped with crisp golden potatoes. Made using spring lamb and a great opportunity to take advantage of ‘wonky veg’ – it’s a wonderfully tasty, easy cook alternative to a roast dinner!’

Preparation time: 30 – 40 mins
Cooking time: 1 hour 35 mins – 2 hours
Serves: 6 - 8
Total cost: Approx. 11.97 (with meat); 6.97 (without meat)*

Lamb can be an expensive meat and it does bump up the price of this dish, but certain cuts, such as the scrag end used in this recipe, are cheaper, so shop around, and check out your local butcher’s rather than heading straight to the supermarket. Of course, the recipe also works with other (often less pricey) meats such as beef. And there’s always the option of substituting the meat altogether for more chunky veg, which will considerably lower the overall cost and offer a nice little vegetarian option, too.


600g diced stewing lamb (or ‘scrag end’)
10 carrots peeled and sliced
3 onions peeled and sliced
1 butternut squash, cubed
500g swede, diced
1kg waxy potatoes peeled and sliced into thin disks
750ml stock (veg or lamb)
2 tbsp seasoned flour
3 tsp Worcestershire sauce
3 Bay leaves (or a generous dash of mixed herbs)
Oil or butter for frying


1. Heat oven to 160°C/fan 140°C/gas mark 3
2. Toss the diced lamb in the seasoned flour
3. Heat some oil or butter in a large shallow casserole dish or frying pan
4. Brown the lamb in batches, and place to one side
5. Fry the onions, carrots, squash and swede in the pan with a little more oil until the onions have softened and started to colour a pale gold
6. Sprinkle over any remaining flour and allow to cook for a couple of minutes
7. Pour in the stock, Worcester sauce and herbs, then bring to the boil
8. Stir in the meat then turn off the heat
9. Arrange the sliced potatoes on top of the meat, then drizzle with a little more oil (or dab bits of butter over)
10. Cover, then place in the oven for about 1½ hours until the potatoes are cooked
11. Remove the lid and brush the potatoes with a little more oil, turn the oven up to brown the potatoes, or finish under the grill for 5 to 8 minutes until brown

*Prices from Morrisons, correct at time of publishing

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