A Quick and Easy Weekday Meal for the Whole Family

As temperatures are beginning to dip, more and more people are reaching for their favorite comfort foods; the rich, hearty, stick-to-your-bones kind of food that you want to eat while curled under a blanket with your loved ones as a fire roars in front of you. Unfortunately, most people do not have the time or the energy after a long day of work for of preparation and cooking involved in making that kind of food. If you are one of those that craves homey-goodness but needs to get dinner on the table quickly, this budget-friendly recipe is for you.

Shepherd’s pie comes to us from England and is simple, filling and delicious. While it is traditionally made with minced lamb (hence the “shepherd” in “Shepherd’s pie”) this recipe calls for the cheaper and typically more accessible ground beef. You could substitute ground turkey, chicken, lamb or pork, depending on what you have on hand. As a shortcut, frozen mixed vegetables are used in lieu of washing, chopping and preparing fresh vegetables.

Ingredients: (Serves 6)

  • Three large potatoes, peeled and cubed into 1-inch chunks
  • 2T sour cream
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 1 stick (1/4 cup or 8T) of butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (peas, carrots, corn)
  • 1 ½ lbs ground beef
  • ½ cup beef broth
  • 1t Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: Shredded cheese

A Quick and Easy Weekday Meal for the Whole Family

Preparation:

  1. Set frozen vegetables out at the beginning of preparation to help defrost. The vegetables do not have to be completely thawed before using.
  2. Preheat over to 400F degrees.
  3. Bring large pot of salted water to a boil and add cubed potatoes, reduce to simmer and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15-20 minutes.
  4. Over medium heat, melt 4T of butter in a large sauté pan. Add chopped onion and garlic and cook about 6-10 minutes until fragrant and tender, stirring frequently. Add ground beef and cook until browned, seasoning with salt and pepper.
  5. Add vegetables, beef broth and Worcestershire sauce to mixture. Bring broth to a simmer and then reduce to low heat.
  6. Keep uncovered and cook about 10 minutes. You may need to add more beef broth to keep mixture from drying out.
  7. Spread the mixture out into the bottom of a large 9x13 baking pan. Allow to cool slightly before adding mashed potatoes.
  8. Once potatoes are tender (a fork can pierce easily), drain water and remove from pot. Combine potatoes with sour cream, heavy cream, and remaining butter, using a fork or potato masher to mix together.
  9. Spoon the mashed potatoes on top of the meat and vegetable mixture, spreading out to cover. Cook in the preheated oven until the top is browned and bubbling, about 30 minutes.
  10. Optional: During the last 5 minutes of cooking, add shredded cheese to the top of the pie for extra deliciousness.
  11. Remove and allow to sit for about 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

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