Last weekend I made a giant leg of rosemary-and-garlic-marinated lamb and served it as part of my Greek dinner. Although it was wildly flavorful, succulent, and perfectly cooked, because there were fewer people than I had expected, there was a lot left over. Since I couldn't let the lamb go to waste, I decided to make shepherd's pie. Instead of browning raw lamb, like the following recipe suggests, I sautéed the veggies and added the cooked chopped lamb with the tomato paste. While there are tons of shepherd's pie variations out there, I chose this one because it has a scallion-cheddar cheese crust on top of the mashed potatoes! It's a hearty, comforting, and delicious one-pot, make-ahead meal, so learn the technique:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 pound minced British lamb
1 pound minced beef
2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
3 carrots, peeled and chopped very small
1/2 pound cremini mushrooms
1 level tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 level tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup red wine
1 1/2 cups fresh beef stock
Freshly ground black pepper
For the crust:
2 pounds Yukon gold potatoes
2 tablespoons butter
Freshly ground black pepper
1 cup scallions, cleaned and chopped
1 cup mature Cheddar, coarsely grated
- Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in a Dutch oven or deep saute pan. Brown the lamb and beef. Remove the meat from the pan with a slotted spoon.
- Add the onions to the pan and saute until the onions are tinged brown at the edges — about 5 minutes. Add the chopped carrots and cook for 5 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms, tomato puree, thyme, parsley and cinnamon. Stir and saute for 2 minutes. Next, stir in the flour, which will soak up the juice, then stir in the wine and the beef stock. Taste and add salt and pepper, as needed. Return the meat to the pan and bring to a boil. Cover, turn down the heat to low and simmer for about 30 minutes until the lamb is fully cooked.
- Peel the potatoes, cut them into large even-sized pieces and place into a pot of cold, salted water. Bring the water to a boil and cook potatoes until they are tender, about 10 minutes. (Potatoes are done when a knife can easily go through.)
- When the potatoes are done, drain off the water, return them to the saucepan, cover with a clean tea cloth to absorb the steam and leave them for about 5 minutes. Next, add the butter and mash them to a puree. Season with salt and pepper.
- When the meat is ready, spoon it into a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and level it out with the back of the spoon. After that, spread the mashed potato evenly all over.
- Sprinkle the scallions on top of the potato, scatter the cheese over the scallions and bake the pie until the top is crusty and golden, about 25 minutes.
- Main Dishes, Lamb
- North American