To add to this list, I have been known to get drunk on gin when I have friends round on a sunny afternoon. I forgot about it and hideously overcooked a beautiful 2.6kg sirloin of beef. Even still with the merest hint of pink on the inside, it was moist and tender but my cheeks burned with shame (and the alcoholic flush) when I sliced into it.
Served with summertime accompaniments of steamed carrots, broad bean salad and new potatoes crushed with Greek yoghurt and horseradish, there was no denying it; I'd ballsed it right up. I thought of the leftovers and shuddered at the image of drying slices of meat heaped pitifully atop piles of salad leaves, perked up only by a smear of mustard and a quartered pickled onion. No no, it wouldn't do.
Having spied the leftover crushed new potatoes and a few carrots languishing as well, there was only one thing for it; chopped into chunks, the meat would make a cottage pie. Not really the weather for it, but after feasting in Hong Kong I was rather taken by the idea of some warming British comfort food. A damn fine pie it made too; crispy peaks of the crushed potato, spiked with horseradish spiciness yielded to rich, unctuous gravy, sweetened with carrot and studded with tender chunks of beef. This was the only way to atone for my sins.
300gr leftover roast beef, chopped into chunks
A few (leftover) carrots, diced
A large onion, diced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
Beef stock, to cover
2 sprigs of thyme
1 tbsp cornflour, mixed with 1 tbsp water
Cold mashed potato - I used new potatoes and crushed them with horseradish, Greek yoghurt and 2 sliced spring onions
Fry the onion and garlic slowly until soft and translucent. Add the carrots and fry for another 5 minutes. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Throw in the sprigs of thyme, the chunks of beef and cover with the beef stock. Simmer slowly for 40 minutes. Thicken with the cornflour and then pour into a dish. Top with the potato, make slight peaks with a fork and bake for 30 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned and the dish is bubbling, making an unholy mess of your oven.
Remove, leave to stand for 10 minutes and serve.