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How to make Lancashire hotpot

This traditional comfort food classic of layered lamb, veg and potatoes is perfect for a hearty family dinner. Learn to make it in just a few easy steps with our simple recipe, and don't forget to jot down the ingredients list at the bottom ready for your next shopping trip.

  1. Brown the lamb

    Put 2 tbsp plain flour into a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Trim the fat from 875g lamb neck fillet and chop into 5-6cm pieces (you could also use lamb steaks or stewing steak). Add to the bowl and toss in the seasoned flour until evenly coated.

    Preheat the oven to gas 3, 170°C, fan 150°C. Heat 1 tbsp of rapeseed (or olive) oil in a large nonstick frying pan, add the meat and any excess flour and fry over a medium-high heat until lightly browned. You don’t want to overcrowd the pan, so fry the lamb in two batches if necessary. Remove the meat from the pan and set aside.

    Brown the lamb
  2. Cook the veg

    Pour ½ tbsp more oil into the same pan and drop a small knob of butter in with it. Thinly slice 2 large onions and 2 medium carrots and add to the pan, along with 3 sprigs of fresh thyme. Fry for about 5 mins or until the onions are just starting to soften and the edges are turning brown.

    Cook the veg
  3. Layer up

    Thinly slice 750g King Edward or Maris Piper potatoes, then lay a single layer of the slices in the bottom of a 20cm diameter x 9cm deep (8in x 3½in) casserole dish. Arrange half the lamb over the potatoes. Tip half the onions, carrots and thyme over the lamb and spread out evenly. Take 125g quartered chestnut mushrooms, and add half. Season, then repeat with the rest of the lamb and vegetables.

    Arrange the remaining slices of potatoes over the top in overlapping layers (keep the neatest slices to go on the very top). Dot with small pieces of butter and season with salt and pepper as you layer. Press down gently if necessary to fit the potato slices in the dish (they will sink during cooking). Finish by dotting a final few pieces of butter on top then grind over some pepper.

    Layer up
  4. Bake

    Pour 200ml chicken or lamb stock in at the side of the dish. Cover loosely with a sheet of lightly buttered foil, scrunching it against the sides of the dish. Put on a baking tray and bake for 1½ hrs. Remove the foil and bake for a further 1 hr or until the meat is tender and the potatoes are golden.

  5. Rest

    Let it sit for about 5 mins before serving. Scatter with a few thyme leaves to finish.

    LancashireHotPot final

    Calories 680 (34%), sugar 6g (7%), fat 43g (61%), saturates 20g (100%), salt 1.1g (18%), based on 4 servings.

  6. Ingredients

    We've prepared a simple shopping list so you can easily get all you need to make this hearty dinner. Be sure to note down the ingredients or take a screenshot before heading to the shops.

    875g lamb neck fillet, steaks or stewing steaks, cut into 5-6cm pieces, excess fat trimmed
    1½ tbsp rapeseed or olive oil
    15g butter, plus extra for greasing
    2 large onions, halved lengthways, thinly sliced
    2 medium carrots, sliced 
    3 thyme sprigs, plus extra thyme leaves to garnish
    750g King Edward or Maris Piper potatoes, thinly sliced 
    125g chestnut mushrooms, quartered or halved if small
    200ml chicken or lamb stock