Just What The Doctor Ordered.

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COMFORT FOOD – Shepherd’s Pie

Happy Monday to you! I hope you had a great weekend and have survived your Monday. During this time of year, one thing, besides coffee, that helps to bring me through my day is being able to go home and watch Monday night football. It’s one of those events that brings familiarity, fond memories and signifies that fall is upon us. I don’t know about you, but I cannot sit on my gluteus and watch the whole game, so cooking is perfect! And on this night of familiarity and tradition I crave comfort food, nothing too serious, nothing I can’t pronounce and nothing I haven’t had before. Which bring us to one of my favorite comfort foods, Shepherd’s Pie.

I love it mostly because it’s simple and it contains everything you need in one dish, you got veggies, meat, potatoes and it’s wonderfully good.

Cooks Info asserts that shepherd’s pie originated in Scotland and northern England. The dish came into existence after potatoes were accepted in the United Kingdom, which was at the end of the 1700s.

Before this point, a similar dish to shepherd’s pie was commonly prepared in Scotland. Instead of potatoes, a pastry crust was used. The dish was not officially named until 1870. Shepherd’s pie is commonly made with mutton or lamb. If the dish is made with another type of meat, it is referred to as cottage pie. Vegetables such as onion are used to season the meat. Peas are often included in shepherd’s pie.

Now, I am not a fan of lamb, so I have used beef, but obviously if you like lamb you are not baaaaaad to throw it in, pardon the bad joke. This recipe is very easy, very delicious and will definitely provide you with leftovers for the next day. I served 4, but could have served 6.

I hope your Monday night was as comfy as mine, make this, you will enjoy it. Thanks so much for reading and have a great new day tomorrow.

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Spreading the mashed potatoes over the pie prior to baking it in the oven.

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Voila! Fresh and hot out of the oven and ready to get sliced and eaten.

Ingredients

For the potatoes:

1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes

1/4 cup half-and-half

2 ounces unsalted butter

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 egg yolk

For the meat filling:

2 tablespoons canola oil

1 cup chopped onion

2 carrots, peeled and diced small

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 1/2 pounds ground beef or lamb

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons tomato paste

1 cup chicken broth

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

2 teaspoons freshly chopped rosemary leaves

1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme leaves

1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels

1/2 cup fresh or frozen English peas

 

Directions

  • Peel the potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch dice. Place in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Set over high heat, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, uncover, decrease the heat to maintain a simmer and cook until tender and easily crushed with tongs, approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Place the half-and-half and butter into a microwave-safe container and heat in the microwave until warmed through, about 35 seconds. Drain the potatoes in a colander and then return to the saucepan. Mash the potatoes and then add the half and half, butter, salt and pepper and continue to mash until smooth. Stir in the yolk until well combined.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  • While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the filling. Place the canola oil into a 12-inch saute pan and set over medium high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the onion and carrots and saute just until they begin to take on color, approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and stir to combine. Add the beef, salt and pepper and cook until browned and cooked through, approximately 3 minutes. Sprinkle the meat with the flour and toss to coat, continuing to cook for another minute. Add the tomato paste, chicken broth, Worcestershire, rosemary, thyme, and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer slowly 10 to 12 minutes or until the sauce is thickened slightly.
  • Add the corn and peas to the beef mixture and spread evenly into an 11 by 7-inch glass baking dish. Top with the mashed potatoes, starting around the edges to create a seal to prevent the mixture from bubbling up and smooth with a rubber spatula. Place on a parchment lined half sheet pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 25 minutes or just until the potatoes begin to brown. Remove to a cooling rack for at least 15 minutes before serving.

Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown.

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