Shepherd’s Pie 😋

We’re in the middle of the polar vortex and all we want to do is eat plants – based on that, so Shepherd’s Pie is season! One of my husband’s favourite dishes this winter is lentil shepherd’s pie, which consists of lentils, mashed potatoes and some gravy. If ever there was a comfort food, especially on a cold winter’s day, it’s this one. This super-cosy vegetarian version is free to roam around, but if you ever get stuck at home without food and money, you can always walk into the local grocery store to buy a super-cosy, vegan, plant-based version. Sources: 2, 3, 8, 15

A spicy beef-vegetable-sauce filling is prepared in a cast-iron pan, laid over fluffy, perfectly creamy mashed potatoes and then fried until golden brown. Sources: 1

At this point, you can spread the mashed potatoes directly into the stew, as you would with the pan, or put the layers together in a separate baking dish before baking. Stir in the peas and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes until soft and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Spread the mashed potatoes with a brush of butter (or, if you’re particularly ingenious, spread over them and fry until golden brown). Sources: 2, 3

What’s interesting about Shepherd’s Pie is that Scotland usually makes the cake with dough instead of mashed potatoes, which actually sounds great. You can freeze it, but you have to remember that potatoes never have the same consistency after freezing, so you have to try it soon. Sources: 0, 19

In Indonesia, a similar dish is called a pastel tutup (closed cake) and is usually made with a boiled egg and topped with mashed potatoes. Fish cake is a part of English cuisine made from a piece of fish, usually fish or tuna, topped off with mashed potatoes and a little sauce. Sources: 6

Shepherd’s Pie was originally made with ground lamb, but you can make cottage pie with any other ground meat. Shepherd’s pie is made from ground lamb or mutton from the sheep, minced meat or even ground turkey can also be used. Meat lamb is traditional, and minced beef can be used in this recipe, but if you really want lamb can be used instead. Americanized versions replace lamb with ground beef, though minced beef, chicken, pork chops, turkey, and even beef are the most commonly used. It is a tradition to use ground sheep and it is also a tradition in the United States and many other parts of the world, as well as in some countries in Europe and Asia, for example in Australia. Sources: 0, 4, 13, 17

Traditional shepherd’s pie contains a walnut combination, which is considered one of the most popular ingredients in the United States and many other countries. They swap the ground beef for walnuts or a combination of mushrooms, walnuts and lentils. Sources: 9

The minced meat is boiled in milk, broth and spices and then topped with peas, carrots and creamy mashed potatoes. Traditional shepherd’s pies are now more commonly made with fresh minced meat, but traditionally this would make it easier to make a cream tin of sweetcorn in the middle and mashed potatoes on top. The modern Cumberland pie has been one of the most popular versions of Shepherd’s Pie in America for many years. Sources: 5, 6, 7

Place the beef-vegetable mixture on an 8×8-shaped tin and finish to make the mashed potatoes. Spread the potato and cauliflower mash over the meat and mushroom filling, making sure it is completely covered. Spoon the potatoes roughly and let them rest for a few minutes until a brown ridge has formed around the edges, like a shepherd’s pie. Spread the meat mixture evenly on the base of the baking trays or the baking dish. Sources: 10, 16, 20

You can pour a dash of cheddar cheese over the mashed potatoes or simply brush with a little butter before baking. I also like to add grated spicy cheese, but if you don’t want cheesy mashed potatoes, just leave the potatoes. Sources: 4, 20

More importantly, I’ve been making this casserole for over two decades and call it shepherd’s pie. I’ve tried various pie recipes over the years, which my husband still raves about, but I stuck with them. Sources: 11, 17

When I decided to try vegan shepherd’s pie, I didn’t know if I’d really have it. I did it because my husband thought it was a good alternative to his favourite dish, but also because I’m a big fan of it. Sources: 12, 15

The meat mixture is very moist, onions, cheese and potatoes go together really well, and the carrots give the cake a sweet taste. To make the shepherd’s pie, brown the minced meat in a large pan with diced onions. Sources: 12, 18

The mashed potatoes on top are also very easy to prepare and are a great accompaniment to meat, cheese and potatoes. Sources: 20

Remove the shepherd’s pie from the oven and let it rest for a few minutes before serving. Single Porving Shepherd’s Pie seems to be the best method, but if you have leftover mashed potatoes or flour, it’s even easier to put them together. I have used everything I have available to do this and while it certainly offers ways to recycle leftovers, the result is still delicious. Sources: 10, 14, 18, 20

Food: Shepherds Pie 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20

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