Yesterday being St. Patrick’s Day, I wanted to try something a bit Irish for supper…but did not make that decision until late in the afternoon when I did not want to go back out to the grocery store. Fortunately I printed out a recipe from Food Network, Rachel Ray’s 30 minute Shepherd’s Pie…http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/30-minute-shepherds-pie-recipe/index.html
I made some changes to the recipe to lighten it up. Essentially the recipe calls for mashed potatoes (mashed with cream cheese or sour cream). I had neither, so I used a little butter and some nonfat milk for the potatoes. For the ground beef portion, I did not use cream, but used fat free half and half and some broth, making a gravy, flavored also with worchestershire sauce and thickened with flour. That’s stirred into sauteed ground beef, onions, carrots, and peas, to which paprika is also added. The meat mixture is spread in the bottom of a casserole and topped off with the seasoned mashed potatoes. The whole thing is baked for 20-30 minutes. It’s wonderful – it was very good.
If I were to do this recipe again, I would intensify the flavor of the meat mixture by using some Williams Sonoma Beef Flavor Stock Concentrate, (http://www.williams-sonoma.com) plus I think I’d use a bit of heat–replace some of the paprika with cayenne. This is comfort food at its best. Of course, I almost got to tell you how I made it on the grill,–since there were bad thunderstorms and we lost power for a couple of hours. I actually started the potatoes cooking on the grill, in a cast-iron casserole, but the grill version will have to wait for another day.