Shepard’s Pie is such a comforting winter dish and makes for great leftovers. It’ a classic, traditional recipe, although this was my first time trying the dish with lamb and not beef. The meat and vegetables were so satisfying and flavorful on their own that I can even recommend this dish sans potatoes.
Some of the equipment you’ll need you should already have stocked in your kitchen, and if not, consider buying the following things:
Mixing bowls Potato masher or food mill Large ovenproof casserole dish
Cutting board Large pot Spatula
Kinfe Saute pan Microplane or other zester
For the filling:
-4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
-1 Spanish onion, diced
-2 stalks celery, small diced
-3 cloves garlic, minced
-1 whole celery root, peeled and medium diced
-1 lb ground lamb
-2 tbsp tomato paste
-1/2 cup red wine
-2 tbsp fresh mined rosemary
-2 sprigs thyme, leaves only, minced
-1 tsp whole mustard seed
-1 tsp coriander seed
-2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
-2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
For the mashed potatoes:
-2 lbs. yukon gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
-3 tbsp kosher salt
-2 bay leaves
-1 dried chili pepper
-2 tbsp unsalted butter
-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
-1 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese
-2 tbsp grated horseradish, preferably fresh
-zest of 1 lemon
-salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Peel potatoes and cut them into quarters. In a large pot, add chilies, bay leaves, salt, and potatoes. Add enough water to fully cover the potatoes and cover the pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer with the lid removed for about 20 minutes, or until cooked all the way through. Strain and discard bay leaves and chilies.
2. Prepare onion, carrots, celery, celery root, rosemary, thyme, and garlic. Place all diced vegetables and herbs in a dish, leaving garlic on the side.
3. In a saute pan, heat 2 tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the lamb and brown. Add mustard seed and coriander seed. Add onions, carrots, celery, celery root, rosemary, thyme, and combine with a spatula.
4. When vegetables have cooked slightly, add garlic and tomato paste and mix. Add red wine. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 5-10 minutes until everything is cooked through, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat.
5. After potatoes have cooked and drained, use a masher or food mill to mash potatoes. Add butter, lemon zest, olive oil, and horseradish. Add grated cheddar cheese. Transfer lamb mixture to a deep ovenproof baking dish and spread evenly. Adjust seasoning. Spread a layer of potatoes over the lamb mixture and run a fork over the top, creating ridges. Bake until potatoes are golden and the lamb is hot, about 15-20 minutes.
6. While the dish is baking, prepare the mint and parsley to garnish. When potatoes are done, remove and sprinkle the mint and parsley over the potatoes. Drizzle some olive oil and serve!