Since I’m up visiting family, I’ve been indulging my inner gourmet chef (and who wouldn’t, with such a lovely kitchen to work in, compared to my little kitchen closet at home!). It’s only Wednesday, and I’ve already made some very yummy foods. Earlier this week I made a version of Martha Stewart’s Perfect Macaroni and Cheese (OMG delicioso!), and last night, I made two delicious Shepherd’s Pies.
Anyway, these pies were absolutely delicious; I’m so glad I had the chance to make them for an appreciative audience. Since being with my hubby, he invariably persuades me to not go to all the trouble of a full Shepherd’s Pie, and just make fried hamburger and mashed potatoes (or what my Scottish forbears would call “mince and tatties”). I used to make them quite a lot; my mother taught me how to make them from scratch (“Step One: Catch your Shepherd…”), and over my life I must have made dozens, or at least so many that I don’t even use a recipe any more!
To that end, I have done my best to write up a recipe for this yummy Shepherd’s Pie, as it’s totally worth it; enjoy, and be sure to let me know in the comments if you make this recipe…I’d love to hear from you!
- 4 large Yukon Gold (yellow flesh) potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp butter, divided
- 1/2-3/4 cup milk
- 2 tbsp canola oil
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 medium yellow onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 2 lbs. lean ground beef (you can substitute up to 1 lb. of lamb for more authentic Shepherd’s Pie)
- 2 tsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp each dried basil and oregano
- 1 cup beef broth
- 2 tbsp Bisto or other powdered beef gravy mix
- 1 cup peas, fresh or frozen (not canned)
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place oven rack in middle of oven.
- Put large pot of water on to boil; add 1 tsp salt. Boil cut potatoes until fork-tender; drain, add milk and butter, and mash until creamy. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat large frypan at medium heat with canola oil; when hot, add diced onion, carrot and celery and stir frequently until vegetables are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add ground beef and fry together, stirring frequently, adding soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce and pepper, until meat is no longer pink.
- Stir Bisto into cold beef broth until well-mixed; add to meat mixture and stir to combine. (If you don’t have beef broth or Bisto, you can use just equivalent amounts of cold water and cornstarch, but the beef broth and brown gravy mix help the pie taste even richer and meatier. Totally your call.) Add green peas and stir well. Remove from heat.
- In a large, deep casserole dish, spoon hot meat mixture and level. Spoon mashed potatoes on top, covering meat mixture completely. Smooth and level potatoes until level or slightly lower than rim of casserole dish. If desired, use fork to place design pattern on top of potatoes. Sprinkle paprika, salt, and pepper over top; dot with reserved 2 tbsp butter.
- Bake, uncovered, for 30-45 minutes, or until top is browned and bubbling.
- Serve hot, or let sit for up to 30 minutes.