Hachis Parmentier

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Hachis Parmentier is a dish of ground meat covered with mashed potatoes and baked, similar to the British dish shepherd's pie.[1]

Hachis Parmentier is documented in English as early as 1898, where the minced meat is covered by a "creamy purée of potatoes, slightly coloured by the heat of the oven". It was a "commonplace" and "homely" dish of the cuisine bourgeoise, which was nonetheless given place of honor at a Culinary Exhibition in Paris.[2] Originally it was made from leftover cold beef that might have originated with the traditional French pot-au-feu or similar dishes. The well-known French chef Louis Diat wrote in 1946 that:

with the kind of refrigeration we had in our homes, cooked meat could be kept much more safely than cooked. Therefore, when housewives bought their Sunday meat they selected pieces large enough to make into leftover dishes for several days. Our beef was generally cooked in the Pot-au-Feu... the dishes my mother made from this leftover boiled beef, especially the hachis... were... delicious tidbits.[3]

A more elaborate version in 1921 by the culinary great, Auguste Escoffier, consisted of a baked potato whose contents were emptied, mixed with diced meat and sauce lyonnaise, and returned to the potato shells or skins to be baked.[4]

History and etymology

The dish is named after Antoine-Augustin Parmentier, who, in the late 18th century, was instrumental in the promotion of the potato as food. The word hachis means hash, a dish in which the ingredients are diced or minced.[1][5]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Robert-Collins Dictionnaire Français-Anglais Anglais-Français, Nouvelle Édition
  2. Marguerite Ninet, "Cookery Exhibits in Paris", The Epicure: A Journal of Taste, 5:53:194 (April 1898)
  3. Louis Diat, French Cooking for Americans, J.B. Lippincott Company, Philadelphia, 1946, page 85
  4. Auguste Escoffier, Le Guide Culinaire, Flammarion, 1921, p. 460
  5. Concise Oxford English Dictionary, 11th Edition