It's comfort food time. It's cold out. The holidays are almost here. And while I could post recipes of reindeer sausage or a Kingly dessert of sorts, I'm going with Shepherd's pie.
This is one of those dishes that mom would make for dad to say "I love you." We felt the love eating it too.
There are so many ways to make Shepherd's pie. This is my version. Simple, bold, flavorful. And while many versions include ground lamb (yummy), Shepherd's care for and guard their sheep. They eat beef for dinner. Wouldn't want to offend their fluffy friends.
Shepherd's (watching over their flocks by night) Pie
1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes
1/4 cup heavy cream
4 tbls unsalted butter
2 tbls sour cream (if you have it)
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste (and really... taste it)
2 tbls olive oil
1 chopped onion
3 carrots, peeled and diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 tbls all-purpose flour
1 cup chicken broth (i used homemade without salt added)
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp fresh rosemary chopped fine (1 tsp if using dried)
1 tsp fresh thyme chopped fine (1/2 tsp if using dried)
1 cup frozen corn
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Heat your oven to 400 degrees.
First take care of your potatoes. Washed, peeled and chopped small-ish. Put into cold water. Cover and bring to a boil, cooking for 15 minutes or until tender.
In the mean time, peel and chop your carrots, herbs and garlic.
Chop your onion too. When I have a garden someday, I will definitely grow these. I go through them like water!
Get out your large pan (love my cast iron for this). Heat to medium high. In your olive oil, saute your onion and carrot with salt and pepper. About 10 minutes.
Add your garlic in, as well as your meat (make sure it's not frozen).
Cook until the meat is nearly cooked. Add your flour to begin the rue. Toss to coat.
Next, add your broth, Worcestershire sauce and herbs. Oh the heavenly smells! Bring to a boil and cook for about ten minutes, to thicken it a bit.
How those potatoes doing? Drain 'em.
"Merry Mashed!" (Name that movie) Anyone?
After your filling has thickened, add your corn. Taste for seasoning. I said taste, not eat! Don't eat the whole thing. Still needs some time in the oven.
Then into a 9x13 baking dish, slosh it all in. "Slosh" accurately describes this particular kitchen sound.
Cover with mashed potatoes, smoothing over with a spatula. Sprinkle cheese on top.
Bake at 400 for 25 minutes.
Let rest for 10.
Lastly dish it up for your guests, Shepherds and non-Shepherds alike will love this. After all, at Christmas time we all feel like we are herding something or someone. This meal will fill you and make all things merry.