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COMFORTING SHEPHERD’S PIE

COMFORTING SHEPHERD’S PIE

This comforting shepherd’s pie is a hearty, warm casserole that is an entire meal in itself.  Ground beef and vegetables in a rich gravy are topped with a cheesy, fluffy, mashed potato topping.  I like to serve this beside a simple vegetable salad, like my recipe for Israeli Salad.

A casserole dish of comforting Shepherd's Pie - ground beef and veggies in a rich gravy and topped with a smooth, cheesy, creamy mashed potato topping.

Even down here in Florida, when the evenings become a tad cooler I start to crave the comfort foods that I grew up eating.  This dish is one of my favorites.   I make it often and never tire of it.

WHAT DO I NEED FOR THIS RECIPE?

  • Potatoes  – russets are best for mashing.  Don’t use a waxy potato.
  • Butter and sour cream – you want the creamiest potato, but not too soft or liquidy.
  • Garlic, salt, and pepper – for flavor
  • Parmesan cheese – to help thicken and flavor the potatoes
  • Butter, onion, and garlic to flavor the meat
  • Ground beef – I like using 90% lean
  • Fresh parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper – all to up the flavor of the meat layer
  • Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, flour, beef broth, wine – this is going to make the yummy gravy
  • Peas, carrots, and corn – I like using frozen, but you can use fresh and cook them separately then add to the beef mixture.  I guess you could also use canned, but I’ve never tried.

VARIATIONS?

  • Use ground turkey, chicken broth, white wine, poultry seasoning, and heavy cream instead of beef, beef broth, red wine, and tomato paste.
  • Short on time?  Make the casserole the night before and bake it when needed the next day or skip making your own mashed potatoes and use the refrigerated prepared potatoes.  They are actually really good.
  • Doing low carb?  Use cauliflower and mash it for the topping.  You can also thicken with heavy cream instead of flour.
  • Add more veggies to up the nutritional value.  Include mushrooms, bell peppers, broccoli, or green beans, just to name a few.

A casserole dish of comforting Shepherd's Pie - ground beef and veggies in a rich gravy and topped with a smooth, cheesy, creamy mashed potato topping.

Need more comfort food ideas?  Here are a few to try:

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A casserole dish of comforting Shepherd's Pie - ground beef and veggies in a rich gravy and topped with a smooth, cheesy, creamy mashed potato topping.

COMFORTING SHEPHERD’S PIE


Description

This comforting shepherd’s pie is a hearty, warm casserole that is an entire meal in itself.  Ground beef and vegetables in a rich gravy are topped with a cheesy, fluffy, mashed potato topping.


Scale

Ingredients

For the potatoes

  • 2 pounds russet potatoes (3 large), peeled and cubed into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 stick butter, room temperature
  • ⅓ cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ½ cup grated parmesan cheese

For the meat layer

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • ½ cup frozen carrot cubes
  • ½ cup corn kernels

Instructions

Make the mashed potato topping.  In a large pot, add the diced potatoes and fill with cold water until the potatoes are covered with water by at least 1-inch over the top.

Bring the water to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, about 15 minutes.

Drain in a colander.

Return the potatoes to the warm pot.  Add the butter, sour cream, garlic, salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese.

Use a hand masher to mash the potatoes, stirring to combine the ingredients, until the potatoes are smooth and fluffy.  Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt the butter.

Add the onions and garlic and saute for 5 minutes until the onions just begin to turn translucent.

Crumble in the ground beef and break it up with a spoon, stirring to combine the meat with the onions and garlic.  

Stir in the parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper.  Cook, stirring and breaking up the meat, until the meat is no longer pink, about 8 minutes.

Add in the Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, and flour.  Cook, stirring constantly to combine, for another 5 minutes.

Whisk in the red wine and beef broth.  Whisk until the mixture is well combined with no lumps of flour, tomato paste, and the liquids are fully incorporated.  Stir in the peas, carrots, and corn.

Reduce the heat to a simmer and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the sauce is thickened.  Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Lightly spray a casserole dish with cooking spray.  

Scoop the meat mixture into the casserole dish. Spread it evenly in the dish.

Spoon the potato mixture on top, using an offset spatula to smooth the top.

If desired, you can create a design with a fork on the top of the potatoes.

Place the casserole dish onto a baking pan and slide into the preheated oven.

Bake for 25-30 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow the mixture to sit for 15 minutes before serving.


  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: British

Keywords: comforting Shepherd's Pie, British food, comfort food, casseroles, beef recipes, mashed potatoes

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