Sunday, August 1, 2010

Duck Hachis Parmentier

I grew up eating à la cantine in France (ie, at school) and even though I was not a picky eater there were a few things I did not like and that would make me sick even before eating them.  Hachis Parmentier was one of them and it was dramatic (oui, oui, dramatique!!)  for me since it was on the menu at least once a month! Hachis Parmentier, a mix of ground meat (generally leftover) and potatoes puree, is a pillar of French traditional cuisine. Not the cuisine you'll be served in a top restaurant in France, but rather the one that you cook for your family or for a large group of people (like à la cantine).
It took me a long time to be able to eat Hachis Parmentier without gagging (too much school history)... and even longer to cook it myself. I still don't consider it "a real dish" but because it's so easy to make and generally popular among children, I have been cooking it more often. It 's the perfect dish when you ave 10 children age 1-to-12 driving you crazy running around you. I even think that it is a great alternative to the boring traditional pizza that people serve when five children pretend to come and sleep at your place!
The good thing about Hachis Parmentier is that you can make your own version depending on the meat leftover you have. In this case, we had Duck confit one evening and I had leftover so I used duck meat. You can also serve it with or without cheese on top (I prefer cheese) and with additional vegetables if you feel like it. What would prevent you from making it this week? Bon Appétit!
Ingredients (serves 6)
- 1 pound (500 gr) of ground meat, cooked
- 3 shallots, minced
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 2 Tb of tomato paste (two small tomatoes, diced)
- Olive oil, salt and black pepper
 - 2 pounds (or about 1kg) of potatoes
- Milk or/and light cream.
- Parmesan cheese

  • Pre-heat oven to 360F (180C)
  • In a large pan, saute the shallots and garlic in olive oil. 
  • Add the meat and tomato paste and cook for 10 minutes under low heat.
  • In the meantime, boil the potatoes. Once cooked, drain them.
  • Mash the potatoes and add warm milk/cream until you reach desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper
  • Place the meat in a large deep dish. Cover with mashed potatoes and cover with ground Parmesan cheese
  • Cook in the oven for 20-30 minutes until cheese is fully grilled.
My Personal Comments:
  • You could add a carrot or a few dices of celery to the meat for extra flavor/veggies or make a sweet potatoes/carrots puree instead of mashed potatoes.


  1. My niece love Hachis Parmentier, so do I ... a bit older though I confess. Good idea to use duck in this one.

  2. Oops.... the missing ..s.... love"s"

  3. The American version, "shepards pie" was served in my elemtary school cafeteria all too often. Honestly, I still can't bring myself to eat it! I admire you for getting over your childhood dislikes.

  4. Not fond of this myself but it's amazing how the kids eat it up:-)

  5. Reza MalekzadehDecember 19, 2010

    Hachis Parmentier and Vol au Vent, both were badly bruised by the School Cantine! Duck Parmentier is now one of my favorites.