Hachis parmentier or French Shepherd's pie

Hachis parmentier or French Shepherd’s pie

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Hachis parmentier or French Shepherd's pie
Hachis parmentier or French Shepherd’s pie

A few weeks ago, I was reminded of a traditional French recipe of mashed potatoes and stewed minced meat casserole that my grand-father used to make for us, the Hachis parmentier. Very similar to the Shepherd’s pie, it’s a winter comfort food classic that is also enjoyable during the rest of the year with a side salad.

The most common way to prepare the hachis parmentier is with minced beef, but the recipe also works well with lamb meat or any stew or sauce left-over, such as a Bolognese sauce. There is a “gourmet” hachis parmentier very popular at the moment in the South West of France: the duck confit parmentier made with Duck confit instead of beef minced meat.

You can mix any vegetable and spice according to your taste for the “hachis”: tomato, pepper, carrot, celery, leek etc. I usually like to add a touch of hot spice to the meat because it gives it a little kick, but it’s absolutely not mandatory.

Just go for it following your intuition, it’s very hard to screw up!!!

Hachis parmentier or French Shepherd’s pie

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

1 hour

Serving Size: 4 to 6 persons (13 inches baking dish)

Hachis parmentier or French Shepherd’s pie

Hachis parmentier or French Shepherd’s pie


  • 33 pounds (1,5 kg) of potatoes
  • 1 US cup (20 cl) of milk
  • 1/5 stick (20 grams) of salted butter
  • Fresh ground nutmeg at ease
  • Seasoning: salt, pepper, ground coriander seeds…
Minced meat
  • Olive oil for the pan
  • 1 onion
  • 3 garlic gloves
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 20 to 28 oz (600g to 800g) of beef minced meat
  • 1 tbsp all purpose flour
  • Provençal herbs at ease
  • 1 tbsp soft or hot paprika if you like it
  • Seasoning: salt, pepper, ground coriander seeds…
  • 1/2 US cup (10 cl) red wine
  • !3,5 oz (100 gr) tasty hard cheese (comté, cheddar…)


    1. Peel the potatoes and boil them in hot salty water for about 20 minutes, until they are well cooked.
    2. Slowly warm up the milk in a small pot in the meantime.
    3. Drain the water of the potatoes, put them back in the same pot, incorporate the hot milk, butter and seasoning – and mash all those ingredients together until the purée is ready. Set aside.

    1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180°C).
    2. Chop the onion and garlic gloves. In a pan, warm up a little bit of olive oil and fry them over medium heat until the onion is soft. In the meantime, p*eel and cut the tomatoes* in small pieces.
    3. Incorporate the tomatoes to the pan, along with the minced meat, the flour, the Provençal herbs, the paprika and the seasoning.
    4. Increase the heat to high and cook until the meat is brown.
    5. Pour the red wine in the pan and continue cooking until evaporated, then turn off the heat.
    6. Spread half of the purée evenly in the bottom of the backing dish, cover with the stewed meat and top with a final layer of purée.

  1. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the casserole and bake for 30 minutes. You can broil 5 extra minutes in order to brown the dish evenly at the end of the cooking.
  2. Once the cooking time is over, let it rest a few minutes and serve it straight, along with a little salad if you like.


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