Sunday, August 10, 2008

Shepherd's Pie

I think shepherd's pie is probably one of the ultimate comfort foods. I actually have two versions that I make, one that's a bit more involved and expensive (I'll show you that one soon), and this more traditional, budget friendly version. This is a great dish to make on a Sunday and have for leftovers on a busy weeknight, I think it actually tastes better after a day or two.

You can use any mashed potato recipe you like for this, but for mine I put in a lot of shredded sharp cheddar, half and half and REAL butter. It's worth it, give it a try :) Also, I use a mix of ground beef and lamb, but you can use one or the other.

3-4 carrots, diced
1 medium onion, chopped
1 pound lean ground beef
1/2 - 3/4 lb ground lamb
1 clove garlic, minced
4 green onions (white & green parts), sliced
3-4 tablespoons flour
onion salt and garlic salt to taste
1 1/2 cups beef stock
1/2 cup white wine
2 tablespoon tomato paste
1 can green peas, drained
mashed potatoes
grated sharp cheddar

Make mashed potatoes the way you normally would, add about 1 cup of the cheese to it, mixing well; keep warm.

In a large skillet, saute the onions and carrots in a little olive or vegetable oil until the vegetables begin to soften. Add the ground lamb and beef and cook until browned. Drain off most of the grease, leaving a little in the pan. Add the flour and continue cooking over medium heat for 2 minutes to cook the flour. Stir in wine, stock, tomato paste and seasonings until well mixed. Add green onions and peas, contiue cooking until mixture thickens to a consistency you like. Pour into a 13x9" glass baking dish, top evenly with mashed potatoes. Bake at 350ºF for 30-40 minutes, or until potatoes begin to brown slightly around the edges. Top with additional cheese for the last 5 minutes of cooking time if desired (or sprinkle with paprika before baking).

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