All That Leftover Meat, A Shepherd's Pie We'll Eat

Today, we'll be making one of our favorites - the classic Shepherd's Pie. Sources reveal that Shepherd's Pie originated in the United Kingdom and Ireland around the 1700s. While there are arguably different ways of preparing the dish, the main feature of the recipe would comprise potatoes and meat. A historical record mentions that housewives used to make them from leftover meat due to adverse conditions during that time.

Ready to bake? Here we go!


Ingredients

Meat Filling:

  • Garlic cloves - 6, minced
  • Yellow onions - 2 large ones, chopped
  • Minced meat (beef/lamb/chicken) - about 1 kg
  • Dried parsley leaves - 6 teaspoons
  • Dried rosemary leaves - 3 teaspoons
  • Dried thyme leaves - 3 teaspoons
  • Brown sugar - 1 or 2 tablespoons
  • Salt - 2.5 teaspoons
  • Grounded black pepper - 2.5 teaspoons
  • All-purpose flour - 6 tablespoons
  • Frozen mixed vegetables (comprising corn kernels, peas, and diced carrots) - 1 kg
  • Tomato purée - 1 can (420ml) 
  • Worcestershire sauce - 3 tablespoons

Potato Toppings:

  • Potatoes (russet potatoes, if possible) - about 2.5 kg
  • Unsalted butter - 18 tablespoons
  • Full cream milk - 1 mug
  • Salt - 1.5 teaspoons
  • Ground black pepper - 1 teaspoon
  • Parmesan cheese - 1 cup 

How to Make

Making the Meat Filling:

  1. Ensure that your minced meat has been properly defrosted. Place a deep non-stick frying pan on the stove and place your minced meat inside on medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Ensure that the minced meat is properly crumbled and not chunked into big clump pieces. Stir occasionally until the meat has gone brown.
  2. Add the yellow onion and garlic. Stir well. Cook for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add sugar, salt, and all the herbal leaves. Stir well for another 5 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato purée. Then add the flour bit by bit as you stir the meat filling.
  5. Add the frozen mixed vegetables. Stir well. Simmer for about 10 minutes while occasionally stirring.
  6. Once done, set the meat filling aside and pre-heat the oven for 10 minutes at 180 degrees Celcius.

Making the Potato Topping:

  1. Boil the potatoes in a large pan until it is tender.
  2. Place the potatoes in a colander and leave them for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add in the butter, salt, and pepper. Mash the potatoes and add in the full cream milk bit by bit until it all mixes well.
  4. Add in the parmesan cheese and stir well.

Making it:

  1. Simply pour the meat filling into your baking dish until the filling is about half the dish's height.
  2. Spoon the mashed potatoes on top of the meat, spreading it evenly. 
  3. Bake uncovered for about half an hour. Optionally, you can sprinkle some mozzarella cheese and bake for another 10 minutes.
  4. Once baked, let it cool for about 15 minutes.



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