Monday, April 13, 2009

You know how some days nothing goes according to your plan? Well, yesterday was one of those wonderful days. I probably should have just stayed out of the kitchen but since it was Easter I felt like I owed Ken a decent dinner. I'd also told him to quit whining earlier in the day (clearly I’m not known for my sensitivity) so you could also call this "guilty shepherd's pie". He loves it and frequently orders it at MacCool’s so I attempted to make Rachel Ray’s 30 minute version of this dish.

Thirty minutes my butt!! It took me at least an hour to make this dish and I set off two smoke detectors in the process. (Aren’t you feeling better about your cooking skills already?) I also spilled half of the meat/vegetable mixture on the floor and by the time it was all over with, my kitchen looked like a natural disaster area. Ken’s comments about the whole thing – did you mean for it to taste this way? (Pizza Hut, anyone?)

Here’s the recipe from Rachel Ray’s cookbook:

2 pounds potatoes (russet or whatever)

Salt and pepper

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 ¾ lbs ground beef or ground lamb (I used turkey, of course)

1 carrot, peeled and chopped

1 onion, chopped

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons all purpose flour

1 cup beef stock or broth

2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce

½ cup frozen peas

2 tablespoons sour cream or softened cream cheese

1 large egg yolk

½ cup cream (vegetable or chicken broth my be substituted)

1 teaspoon sweet paprika

2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

I added shredded mozzarella on top.

Rachel says to boil the peeled potatoes for 12 minutes. I hate mashing potatoes so I boiled them for at least 20 minutes. I also made like three pounds of potatoes because they were so small that I thought the recipe warranted the whole bag. I was wrong and ended up eating the excess. (Hello Gym!)

Heat a large skillet over medium high heat (here’s where the first smoke detector went off), add oil and your meat. Brown and crumble meat for 3 – 4 minutes. Spoon out fat if there is excess. Add carrot and onion; cook 5 minutes. In a second small pan over medium heat, cook butter and flour (cue smoke detector #2!). Whisk in broth and Worcestershire. Cook to thicken, 1 minute. Add gravy to meat mixture, stir in peas.

Drain potatoes and pour into a bowl. Combine sour cream, egg yolk, and cream. Pour the cream mixture into potatoes and mash until potatoes are almost smooth. I whipped them because like I said, I’m not a huge fan of mashing. Preheat broiler to high. Fill a small casserole dish with meat and vegetable mixture. Spoon potatoes evenly over meat. Top potatoes with paprika and broil 6 to 8 inches from heat until evenly browned.

Ken’s a big fan of this dish and his consensus was that this dish was missing something. I can’t say that I would recommend this recipe for that reason. Anyone got a better one?

1 comment:

Nathan said...

Shepherds pie in my house was always a way to use up Sunday dinner left overs.

My mom would take the left over mashed potatoes and roast and gravy then throw in some green beans. Melt some cheese on top and you got a quick, delicious dinner that uses up the leftovers.

I also like it with a bit of ketchup on top.