In today’s episode, we learn how to make Shepherd’s Pie, but I actually make Cottage pie, I just like that name Shepherd’s pie much better. The difference between shepherds pie and cottage pie is that the former uses lamb and the latter uses beef. Besides that, both dishes are basically the same. Shepherds pie was a smart way to use up leftovers and its something super comforting and delicious.
2 pounds Ground beef (For Cottage Pie) or Lamb (For Shepherd’s Pie)
2 stalks celery
4 cloves garlic
3 tablespoon tomato paste
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 - 1 1/2 cup beef stock
1 cup frozen peas
1 cup frozen corn
1 Can of Guinness
1 Rosemary sprig
3 Thyme Sprigs
1 Bay Leaf
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoon olive oil
2 Tablespoons AP Flour
Cheddar Mashed Potatoes
4 pounds Russet potatoes
4 tablespoons butter
1 cup Aged White Cheddar, grated
1 egg yolk
Roughly chop up the vegetables and then throw them into a food processor and process them up into a coarse mixture.
Peel, chop and rinse the potatoes. Then get them in a pot with cold water, add sea salt and bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and then cook for 15-20 minutes or until potatoes are very tender. Then drain, run through a ricer. Add butter, a little more salt, and half the cheddar and mix into a mash. Let cool and then mix in the egg yolk until well incorporated.
While the potatoes are cooking, begin to cook the meat mixture. In a large pan or a dutch oven medium heat, add the butter olive oil and get it nice and hot. Then add the ground beef, break it up so that it covers the bottom of the pan and brown the meat as well as you can. First, the water in the meat will evaporate and then the meat will begin to fry. Be patient as it may take a bit to achieve the browning. If at any part the fond on the bottom of the pan begins to look like its burning before the meat gets browned, you can add some stock or some beer to deglaze the spots in the pan that might burn and then continue to caramelize the meat. Once the beef is browned and the pan is developing a nice brown crust, add the vegetables. The moisture in the vegetables will deglaze the pan, so take a flat wooden spoon and scrape the bottom of the pan in order to clean and get that crush into the sauce. That's all flavor. Once the vegetable's moisture has deglazed the pan, continue to cook it until the vegetables and the meat get brown and a crust begins to develop again on the bottom of the pan. Add another knob of butter and the flour, mix together and cook for a minute or two. Then add the tomato paste. Mix that in and cook for a minute. At this point, there should be significant fond on the bottom of the pan. That's when to deglaze with the beer. Add a little at a time while scraping the pan. Make sure the bottom of the pan is completely cleaned and all the beer is in the pan and let that reduce by at least half. Then add the Worcestershire sauce and the beef stock. Finally, add the rosemary, thyme and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer and let that reduce until thickened. Then get ready to assemble the Shepherd’s pie.
Butter the bottom of a baking dish, either one big one or two smaller ones to break it up into two meals which is what I like to do, then add the meat mixture a little over halfway up the dish. Then top that with the potatoes. Using a fork, “rake” the potatoes to create texture. Then top with the remaining cheese.
Bake in a 400-degree oven, with a sheet tray underneath it to catch the overflow, until the stew is bubbling and the top is beautifully browned and crisp, about 30 minutes.
Then cook slightly before serving. Cut into squares and serve!
Your support keeps the show running and is very much appreciated. If you'd like to leave a donation for this recipe, please click HERE. Thank you!