Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Shepherds Pie inspired by my friend Jo

My friend Jo, Welsh cook extraordinaire, made a Shepherds Pie with a bit of leftover lamb. That had us wanting a Shepherds pie too so we went to buy some ground lamb.

This particular recipe has been adapted from a Rachael Ray version. I went off course a bit but I did want to try another of her recipes. To this day, I receive the most hits on my Rachael Ray Mini Burgers post. It’s crazy – I made those in 2009 but it remains the most popular post on my site.

Anyhoo………’s what you need:

2 pounds potatoes, peeled and chunked (I used red creamers)
2 tablespoons sour cream or softened cream cheese
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup milk (for a lighter version substitute vegetable or chicken broth. For a richer version use cream)
Salt and black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil,
1 ½ pounds ground lamb
1 carrot, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup beef stock or broth
2 teaspoons Worcestershire saucet
1/2 cup frozen peas,
Sprinkle of paprika

Here’s what to do……

Boil potatoes in salted water until tender, about 12 minutes then drain. Toss the potato chunks into a bowl with sour cream, egg yolk and cream. Add the milk and mash until potatoes are almost smooth.

BUT, while the potatoes are on the boil you can get started on the lamb and veggie fry up. Heat a good sized skillet then add oil to hot pan with beef or lamb. Whichever one suits you – I wanted that lamb as soon as I heard Jo used lamb chunks.

Season meat with salt and pepper and brown about 4 minutes. Since I used ground lamb I drained off some of the fat before adding veggies.

Add chopped carrot and onion to the meat. Cook veggies with meat 5 minutes. I stirred it quite a bit as my stovetop runs extra hot (because it needs replacing….doesn’t work properly). Get out a saucepan and melt the butter, then add the flour. This is like making a b├ęchamel sauce. Whisk in beef broth (or milk if you like) and Worcestershire sauce. This will thicken to a lovely gravy. Tip that gravy into the lamb mixture and combine well.

Stir in the peas and turn mixture into a casserole dish. Top with potatoes. I sprinkled paprika over the potatoes at this point.

In Rachael Ray’s recipe she preheats the broiler to high and shoves that casserole dish in for a few minutes until the potatoes are browned. * I didn’t do the broiler method. I baked the mixture at a lower heat, 375 F, for 20 minutes.

The variations you could use are substituting lamb for beef or even shredded chicken. If you are vegetarian use Tofu Crumbles. I used those quite a bit when I was a vegetarian. Or beans…you could use red beans.

This particular Shepherds Pie was pronounced the best, THE BEST, one I have ever made. The gravy made a difference and it’s actually the first time we tried it with lamb.

Thanks to my Welsh girlfriend for prompting me to make this mouth watering comfort-food dish. Can’t wait to make it again! You'll thank me if you try this version but please.....make that gravy. Mmmm mmmm


  1. Blogger 'ate' my comment - grr!

  2. It went along the lines of 'nice to be someone's inspiration, looks delish, Si and I want the leftovers, what did you and Doug wash it down with/drink, love Jo x'

    Bloody (Mary) Blogger!!!!!

  3. To me this is true comfort food. My boys always asked for this; Rachel's version sounds wonderful

  4. Mrs. L - You are always an inspiration! It was so good I want to make it again but we don't want to tire of it by having it too much.
    Believe it or not, we washed down with plain old water.

    Rita - Our son loved this too when he was living at home. But he hasn't had this version yet. Don't know why I never thought about gravy.

  5. Shepherd's pie is something I discovered when I started blogging. I have never made it but watching yours, I think I must give it a try! It looks very comforting and warm!

  6. very nice version, like it a lot with that extra goody potato goodness ya got going...
    I too find it amusing what folks hit on... some of my weaker posts get a lot of hits... crazy

  7. Katerina, it's just the comforting thing for a cold night.

    Drick, I am a potato lover to be sure. This takes care of all my cravings!

  8. This sounds like a super tasty comfort food dish! Thanks for the veg suggestion! I've never had those crumbles but you can bet I'll be buying some this weekend!

  9. Joanne - Check out Morningstar brand. I found it in the produce section in the grocery store.

  10. I love cream cheese in potatoes. I have never made a traditional shepherd's pie (I always use beef). You make this sound soooo good. I don't know why I am afraid to cook with lamb.)

  11. We had shepherd's pie again last night - proper comfort on a blowy cold January evening! You lot do know that Shepherd's Pie is always lamb right? If it's beef it is Cottage Pie! I love that too - might make that with a chunky beef and carrot stew underneath *wanders off dribbling*

  12. Eliot.....I love lamb but never had it until I was an adult. Sure makes a difference in this dish.

    Jo, I had no idea the hamburger meat was a Cottage Pie version. Cool! I am loving the lamb and Doug says we can't have it any other way now :-)


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