You might have picked up on a theme of late. January for me is a bit of a cop out on the meals front. After crazy Christmas cooking and Master 8’s birthday I’m generally pretty burnt out by January and not feeling the least bit creative. Any one else get a case of the Lazy Cook’s in January?
Anywho! Shepherds Pie is an easy “make-in-bulk” dinner option and this means I can get 3 night’s worth of meals done in one cooking session and that makes me one happy, happy lady!
1/ Boil, drain and mash your potatoes (with milk and butter if you like) and set aside. If you have two large saucepans you can wait until your meat mixture is simmering before boiling your potatoes if you prefer
2/ In a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat throw in the vegetable oil, diced onion, carrot and crushed garlic
3/ Cook stirring occasionally until the vegetables are softened and the onion has become translucent
4/ Place the mince into the saucepan and cook until browned and any excess liquid has evaporated (drain off the fat if you prefer)
5/ Stir in the tomato paste and flour, stirring continuously for 1 minute
6/ Add the crushed/diced tomatoes, parsley, Worcestershire sauce and stock and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the liquid has almost completely reduced. Salt and Pepper to taste
7/ Stir in the frozen peas
8/ Heat your oven to 200 C (400 F)
9/ Layer your meat mixture into an oven dish with a layer of mashed potatoes on top (I like a 50/50 ratio but whichever you prefer is fine)
10/ Fluff up the mashed potato by running a fork along it in straight lines and sprinkle the grated cheese evenly over the top (the shepherds pie pictured is dairy free, no cheese and dairy-free margarine used for mashing…the buttery, cheesy version is delicious though!)
11/ Bake for 15-20 minutes or until it’s golden and crispy on top. Leave to sit for 5 minutes before serving
You can prepare your Shepherds Pie a few days ahead of time. If you’re planning to eat your Shepherds Pie within 3 days then stop before the final step (chucking it in the oven) and instead cover and refrigerate. To freeze for later, before the final step cover securely and freeze immediately for 1-2 weeks.
If frozen then place your Pie in the fridge the night before and give it a good 18-24 hours in the fridge to defrost. From the refrigerator place your pie into a preheated oven at 180 C/350 F for 20-30 minutes or until golden and bubbly and heated through.
I tend to double this recipe and it lasts a family of five 3 dinners with a large salad on the side.
You could also make into individual pies, just keep the ratio of meat to potato mash the same and reduce the oven time to 10-15 minutes (check regularly).
* Recipe used is from here