One of a handful of the first things I made when I started really getting into cooking was a Shephard’s Pie.
This came at a time when money was extremely tight for us, and it cause me to get very creative in the kitchen.
(You can read a little more about that here)
Sometimes piecing together ingredients with a tight budget can be the times you get most creative in the kitchen! I wouldn’t trade those hard times for anything, because that’s when I was forced to learn to try different things when it came to feeding my family, and when my love of cooking began!
At the time, I only had a handful of ingredients on hand; potatoes, ground turkey, and frozen vegetable. A quick google search for recipes with those ingredients brought about a handful of ideas for Shephard’s Pie. (Don’t you just LOVE that you can search anything on the internet and find something?!)
Shephard’s Pie is hearty and comforting, with a true traditional meat and potatoes feel and it’s perfect for those cold winter nights.
This is something I’ve tweaked a bit to suit my personal tastes, it’s a hearty meal that you can make on a tight budget to feed plenty, and I have a husband and a lot of boys in my house! It satisfies everyone’s appetite, and they’re digging in for every last bite.
- 3 large russet potatoes (about 2 pounds)
- 1/2 cup butter or margarine, divided*
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 4 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 pound ground beef or turkey
- 1-2 cups vegetables
- 1/2 cup beef broth
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tablespoon Sherry
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
- salt, pepper, parsley, seasonings
|Start by peeling and quartering your potatoes, then boiling in a large pot for about 20 minutes. (I boil first, then just peel the skins off, no potato peeler needed, the method is up to you!)|
|While the potatoes are boiling, in a large pan heat 1/4 cup butter or margarine till melting, then add the chopped onions and saute for a few minutes until soft.|
|Once the onions are cooked, add your raw ground beef or turkey and minced garlic.|
|I typically like to season my meat while it’s raw, so at this point is where I would add salt, pepper, etc.
With this dish, I actually tried these 2 wonderful finds that I picked up from Safeway. I just seasoned to taste, and added some ground ginger to it as well. I don’t have exact measurements, but if you’ve been reading a while you know I love to season everything! Season away!
|Now add the beef broth, and bring it just to a slight boil and turn down the heat to low. Let it cook on low for about 10 minutes, stirring every so often. If it looks a bit dry then add a little more broth, but 1/2 cup should be perfect.|
|While the meat is cooking in the broth, drain your potatoes. Place them in a large bowl with 1/4 cup butter or margarine. I seasoned this with some dried parsley and the spicy sea salt and pepper seasoning pictured above. Mash them up well.|
|While mashing, pour whipping cream in. Mash until everything is well combined and potatoes are all smoothed out.|
|Prepare your baking dish by spraying or lightly greasing the sides. Fill the bottom of the dish with the meat mixture and spread it evenly.|
|Now spread the potatoes evenly on top of the meat, creating little peaks with a fork.
Pop this in the oven, and cook uncovered for about 30 minutes, until the sides are bubbling.
|The potatoes will be golden and buttery looking, with a slight crisp to the peaked edges.|
|Let cool for about 15 minutes or so before cutting in to serve.|