SHEPHERDS PIE: ULTIMATE COMFORT FOOD

Posted: January 11, 2022 in Uncategorized

This cold weather always has me craving comfort food. and nothing says comfort more than Shepherds Pie!

So we started scanning through the Food Network catalog of recipes when we landed on Alton Brown’s Shepherds pie recipe. I decided to use it simply as a guide, because my daughter isn’t a big fan of lamb. (The original recipe calls for ground lamb. We went with a bottom round beef roast that I trimmed and cubed.)

And, if we’re talking about comfort food, how could adding grated cheddar cheese hurt anything?

 


It came out absolutely delicious!

A few notes: I use organic vegetables, organic grass-fed dairy products, grass-fed beef, pastured eggs, and homemade chicken stock. These extra efforts make a difference to me, but use what you are most comfortable with and have easiest access to.

If you’re on a gluten-free diet, the only gluten in this recipe is in the all-purpose flour. Using a GF flour, like Cup4Cup, does a great job of thickening without the gluten. Feel free to substitute it.

2 oz. cheddar cheese

I start by grating the cheddar cheese. I set it aside for later.

 

Potatoes are the classic ingredient in Shepherds pie, but we found that sweet potatoes are a fantastic substitute. (See the photos at the bottom of the blog.) Give either one a shot yourself, or be really bold and try a combination of the two! The procedure is the same either way…

1 1/2 lbs. Russets, peeled and cubed
1/4 cup half-and-half
2 oz. unsalted butter
3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 egg yolk
 

Peel and cube the potatoes and place them in a pot of cold water. Bring it to a boil and cook the potatoes until they are fork-tender.
While they are boiling, place the half-and-half and butter in a microwave safe bowl and zap them for 35 seconds to warm them up.
Once the potatoes are done, drain them and place them back in the pot. Add the half-and-half and butter and mash really well. Add the salt and pepper and continue mashing. Finally, add the egg yolk, mixing quickly and thoroughly. Then set the potatoes aside.

You will need two separate pots if you’re doing a part potato, part sweet potato combination. And, of course, mixing the potato with the sweet potato is also a tasty choice.

 

 

The meat filling…

2 tablespoons bacon fat (or your favorite oil)
1 cup chopped onion
2 carrots, peeled and diced small
2 garlic cloves, minced

1 1/2 lbs. beef, cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth, preferably homemade
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons freshly chopped rosemary leaves
1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme leaves
1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn
1/2 cup of fresh or frozen peas

Preheat the oven to 400°.

While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the meat filling.

Place the bacon fat or oil in a pan and set it on medium high heat. Add the onions and the carrots and cook until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic and stir.
Add the beef and the salt and pepper and cook until the meat has browned nicely.
Sprinkle the meat with the flour, and mix to combine, cooking for another minute.
Add the tomato paste, chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary and thyme, and stir to combine.
Bring this to a boil, reduce it to a simmer, and cook it for about 10 minutes, until the sauce has thickened nicely.

Add the corn and the peas to the meat mixture, and then pour it all into a baking pan. ( I used a 9-inch round metal baking pan that was about 3 inches deep.)

Spread the mashed potatoes on top of the meat mixture. If you use the mashed potatoes all around the edges, it seals the meat mixture in, and prevents bubbling over and messing up your oven. A rubber spatula makes this job easy.

Place the pan on a parchment-lined baking sheet (to prevent spills), and in the oven to bake for 15 minutes.

After 15 minutes, remove the pan and sprinkle the grated cheddar cheese on top of the potatoes. Then return the pan to the oven for 10 more minutes, until the cheese has melted and created a beautiful golden crust on top.

Remove the pan from the oven, placed it on a wire rack, and let it cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

 

 

As I said earlier, sweet potatoes make a great substitute for regular potatoes. Give them a try!

 

 

And if you like both mashed and sweet potatoes…

 

 

 

Comments
  1. kellymilukas says:

    Yumma

    Kelly M

    >

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Grand love shepherds pie also great because when you have day olds or leftovers a little of this a little of that fantastico

    Hope you had Grand Nollaig Shona and New Year

    Primal R.e.p.r

    Like

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