Some say this is the ultimate comfort food. When my FBP asked me to make this for dinner, I immediately thought of my hips. You know the old saying, "if you're gonna eat that sister, you might as well tape it to your hips"? Yeah, that's the first thing that went through my head. BUT I also knew I been good all week, and this would be the first time in over 7 days I would be preparing red meat. And honestly, what is soooooo bad about potatoes? They are actually really good for you. Yes, the reasoning had officially set in. So I found 97% fat free ground beef, and I enjoyed every last morsel of this rib sticking meal!
I call this dish Shepherd's Pie but after researching it, I discovered that the English refer to this as Cottage Pie if it is made with beef. In order to be an official Shepherd's Pie, it needs to be prepared with ground lamb. But I'm not English. I'm just a good ol' southern girl from Arkansas, and we've always called this Shepherd's Pie. So I'm stickin' with that!
Dontcha' just wanna take a big ol' bite?!!
For the potatoes:
1 1/2 lbs of russet potatoes 1/4 cup half and half
2 oz. unsalted butter
3/4 tsp. salt
1 egg yolk
1 lb. 97% fat free ground beef
2 tbsp. canola oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 carrots peeled and diced small
4 cloves garlic
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
2 tbsp. all purpose flour
2 tsp. tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
2 tsps. fresh mined rosemary
1 tsp. fresh chopped thyme
1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup frozen corn
Peal and cut potatoes into small 1 inch chunks. Place in a large pot, cover with cold water, cover and bring to a boil. Salt the water once it's boiling, remove the lid, and turn the heat down and let the potatoes cook for 15 - 20 minutes or until soft when pricked with a fork.
Drain water off of potatoes in a colander and return to the pot. In a separate container, microwave half and half with butter and mix together. Then add the mixture to the smash potatoes. Add salt and pepper. Stir in the egg yolk until well combined.
Preheat oven 400 degrees.
In a large cast iron pan, heat canola oil. Add onions and carrots and saute for 3 - 4 minutes. Add the garlic and stir to combine. Now add the ground beef, salt, and pepper and let cook until brown and cooked through. Sprinkle the meat with flour and toss to coat. Continue cooking for another minute. Add the tomato paste, chicken broth, Worcestershire, rosemary, thyme and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer 10 minutes to let it thicken. Add the corn and peas to the meat mixture. Top with mashed potatoes starting around the edges to create a seal so the mixture doesn't bubble up while cooking in the oven.
I took a spoon and created texture on the top of the potatoes. Then I sprinkled with a little paprika to give it some color. I also added a little sharp cheddar cheese on half of the pie. My FBP doesn't eat cheese, and honestly you don't have to add it. I was just experimenting. It's great without it too!
Bake 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until the potatoes begin to brown on the top. Remove and let cool 15 minutes.
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