Tuesday, March 5, 2013

How to make Shepherds Pie

This week I made Shepherd’s pie. First of all I need to tell you all a secret, I am not a mashed potato person. There I have said it. I am no longer ashamed by the fact that I do not like them mashed. I do like them baked, fried, and pan cooked. Just not a mashed potato person, and guess what is on top of Shepherd’s pie…. mashed potatoes…. cheese too…you all know how I do with dairy. That being said I have never really tried or wanted to eat lots of Shepherd’s pie. I think I have had it a total of four times in my life. However, I do remember the first time… it was my favorite. Literally the other 3 times I have had it were a huge disappointment. As many of you know test subject Sara is one of my best friends. Here is what you may or may not know. Her family when we were growing up did not cook. Literally, they maybe cooked seven meals a year. They were very busy and lived off the Schwan man. Now that being said, I loved going over to eat at their house, and Sara loved going to my parent’s house to eat (grass is always greener in the other pasture huh) we were weird I know. Anyway, the point of this story is to explain Shepherds pie, so one Sunday afternoon Lynda (Sara’s mom) made us dinner, aka she threw something in the oven, she was getting ready for work and of course we were hungry! So she threw Shepherds pie in the oven. I had never had that before! It was amazing. The top was perfect, the bottom was perfect, I ate more than normal and was pleased…imagine my disappointment the next 3 times when it was not nearly as yummy. Now I know what you are thinking, well maybe it’s because you had it when you were young and it’s not how you really remember it. Well I did not ask you. So fast forward some years, test subject Jon makes Shepherds pie, it’s decent, not what I was expecting. Sorry Jon…then fast forward two years Peter get’s Shepherds pie at the pub, I taste, It’s okay, next time I go I get it, it’s terrible (the lamb in it was bad…I was really upset) now in 2013 I am sitting here trying to figure out dinner, I have ground beef…I really don’t think Peter wants Sloppy Joes, Hamburgers, or Pasta and Meat Sauce again…I know I’ll attempt Shepherds pie! So I did! Did it turn out the Schwan mans? YES! Well almost. Mine was not as crispy on top but it’s ok…. I know how to fix it for next time! So here is my recipe…enjoy make some!

**By the way no Shepheards were harmed in the making of this pie, I am not the barber of Fleet Street nor am I Mrs. Lovett with her meat pies...there are no actual Shepherds...**

What you will need:

1 lb of Hamburger (or whatever, you can use lamb, it’s traditional, but expensive)

3 – 4 carrots

Frozen peas…. I used canned…

1 can of corn

Soy sauce (or Worcestershire)

1 8 oz can of Tomato Sauce (or 2 – 4 tbsp of paste)

1/2 c. of beef broth

1 onion

4 tbsp of butter

Mashed potatoes (side note later)

Pre-heat oven to 350. Okay first sautĂ© onions, butter, and carrots together in a large skillet, once they are “cooked” place in a bowl off to the side. In the same pan brown your hamburger (you really don’t have to wash in between I promise it wont be a big deal). Once it is brown drain it! I did not…I regret this… cook that beef well too ok! Once drained return to pan and add carrots and onions back into the skillet; once they are all in there add 1 – 3 tsp of soy sauce, the beef broth, and tomato product, cook it until it boils and starts to thicken. Add about 1/4 – 1/2 c. of flour to this mixture, it will allow it to stay thicker, I only added 1/4 c. and it needed more just do it until you think wow that’s thick! Now add the peas and corn (they don’t really need to cook) and pour into a large baking casserole dish. Then top with thick Mashed Potatoes. Here is my side note, I bought a bag of potato flakes that you just add water to, okay I bought two, anyway, my potatoes ended up being thick so I added extra water, big mistake, you need them thick for this recipe so don’t make thin potatoes that you would eat, make goopy thick potatoes that you would not normally want to ingest. Okay so top beef mixture with potatoes and you can make a design with a fork if you want. Bake at 350 for 30 – 45 minutes or until the potatoes start to brown. Serve and enjoy. Also you can add cheese to the top the last 10 minutes, I did for Peter, however, next time I am skipping the cheese! Anyway I loved it, it was my new favorite thing and Peter ate lots! So yay! Enjoy oh and if you were wondering, Lynda, Sara, and Tom have been cooking a lot more. It always surprises me when Lynda makes something, because not only is it yummy, but the fact that she cooked something! Love you Lynda!! So my fifth time eating it, I loved it! Make some. Message me, comment, whatever! 

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