Ah, mince and tatties. What Scottish child doesn't remember the taste of their mums or even better, granny's version (don't tell my mum I said that). The secret to good mince is the same as any other meat that needs stewing; long, slow cooking with a lid on.
This is one dish that does not benefit from proper beef stock....Bisto or Oxo is how this dish is made. I don't want to be teaching my 'granny to suck an egg' as the old adage goes but for those friends from abroad who are not horrified at the thought of a plate of minced beef and mashed potatoes, here is the recipe. For those of you who are, look away now!
Mince & Tatties
Minced Beef or Lean Minced Beef (I usually buy 500g but measurements don't matter. Don't buy extra lean for this as you need a certain amount of fat for the beef to cook well).
1 onion, chopped.
2 carrots, sliced.
Approx. 1/2 pint beef stock (add more if required)
1-2 oxo cubes
Heat the oil in a pan and fry the onions and carrots for a few minutes; add the minced beef. Fry continuously over a high heat, stirring all the time until the mince is brown all over. Sprinkle over an oxo cube and stir well. Pour in the beef stock (I always use Bisto) and stir. Turn heat right down and put a lid on it. Check after a few minutes that mince is simmering gently and leave for 30 minutes. Check mince after this time and add more water or stock if needed. Nothing worse than burnt mince! Well, there is but.....we won't go there.
The mince will be cooked after an hour but you can cook it on a low heat for up to two hours for very tender mince but it is very important you check the amount of liquid every 20 minutes or so. Make sure the beef stock isn't that thick to begin with, you can always add a bit more at the last 10 minutes.
Serve with mashed potatoes, or tatties, as we say in Glesga (Glasgow).