Friday, January 17, 2014

Shepherd's Pie

Comfort food.  Probably everyone knows how to make Shepherd's Pie.  It's one of those dishes you can make any way you want and it's the right way.  In fact, I don't ever make it exactly the same way twice in a row. I usually make it when I have some leftover mashed potatoes, but you can make the  mashed potatoes from scratch or even buy the pre-made ones. There are some secrets, I think to good shepherd's pie:
1) tomato paste
2) sugar
3)and Worcestershire sauce in the Meat mixture.

Shepherd's Pie
Meat Sauce
1 lb. ground beef 
1 large onion, chopped
1 small can tomato paste
Beef broth as needed, usually about 1 cup (you can substitute water)
1 Tablespoon sugar (this balances the tomato)
a couple of splashes of Worcestershire sauce
Seasoning Salt, Garlic Salt, salt and pepper to taste

1 can green beans 
Any other vegetables you'd like to add.  I usually just do green beans, but you can add  frozen or canned corn, carrots, peas, etc.  
2-4 cups mashed potatoes
Grated Cheese to top

Brown the onion and ground beef in oil until the onion is soft.  Mix in the tomato paste, sugar, Worcestershire, and seasonings, and enough broth or water to make a nice thick sauce. Mix well and cook together for a few minutes.   Put the sauce in a sprayed casserole dish (or I just cook the meat mixture in my LaCreuset pan and then leave it in there and layer the other stuff on top and put it in the oven in that.)  Layer next with the green beans and other vegetables.  Top with the mashed potatoes.  If using leftover mashed potatoes (as I usually do), heat them a bit first in the microwave.  Spread overall, then top with plenty of grated cheese, and put in a 350 oven until heated through.  

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