British Week – Shepherds’ Pie

This is one of my very favorite English entrees, second only to fish and chips.

My elementary school lunchroom would serve it once a week. It’s perfect comfort food!

For the potatoes:
1 1/2 pounds russet potatoes
1/4 cup half-and-half
2 ounces unsalted butter
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 egg yolk

For the meat filling:
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 carrots, peeled and diced small
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 pounds ground lamb
1 teaspoon each, kosher salt and honey
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons freshly chopped rosemary leaves
1 teaspoon freshly chopped thyme leaves
1/2 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
1/2 cup fresh or frozen English peas

Peel the potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch dice. Place in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Set over high heat, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, uncover, decrease the heat to maintain a simmer and cook until tender and easily crushed with tongs, approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Place the half-and-half and butter into a microwave-safe container and heat in the microwave until warmed through, about 35 seconds. Drain the potatoes in a colander and then return to the saucepan. Mash the potatoes and then add the half and half, butter, salt and pepper and continue to mash until smooth. Stir in the yolk until well combined.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the filling. Place the canola oil into a 12-inch saute pan and set over medium high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the onion and carrots and saute just until they begin to take on color, approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and stir to combine. Add the lamb, salt, and pepper and cook until browned and cooked through, approximately 3 minutes. Sprinkle the meat with the flour and toss to coat, continuing to cook for another minute. Add the honey, tomato paste, chicken broth, Worcestershire, rosemary, thyme, and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer slowly 10 to 12 minutes or until the sauce is thickened slightly.

Add the corn and peas to the lamb mixture and spread evenly into an 11 by 7-inch glass baking dish. Top with the mashed potatoes, starting around the edges to create a seal to prevent the mixture from bubbling up and smooth with a rubber spatula. Place on a parchment lined half sheet pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 25 minutes or just until the potatoes begin to brown. Remove to a cooling rack for at least 15 minutes before serving.

16 thoughts on “British Week – Shepherds’ Pie

  1. Angela Woods says:

    This is a very fine version of the Shepherd’s Pie. Not only do I worship bees but I am a whizz in the kitchen. Variants on above dish are to spice it up a bit with a bit of cumin, pinch of cinnamon and red kidney beans. or use sweet potato as a topping. If you use regular spuds (that’s potatoes to my US cousins) some strong cheddar cheese grated on the top is a good option. In any event, you are right. It is a superior dish.

  2. jmgoyder says:

    I have never realized until meeting you that so many recipes could do with a dash of honey!

  3. SimplySage says:

    Love Shepherd’s Pie. Thanks for the new recipe. I will try!

  4. katiepede says:

    Yum, yum, yum, one of my favourites. I made it for my Bob last week…. I added fresh mint into the mix,…. I had some, so thought “Why not?”, and it added a lovely extra zing πŸ™‚

    When we were little my Dad used to say it was only proper Shepherd’s pie when it was made with real Shepherds! πŸ˜€

  5. Delicious! We’ve always wanted a recipe for this dish and we are so going to us this one! Thank you so much! On another note, interesting work with the bees — sticky work. Something exciting for us to try one day! Hope you have a great day!

    • Thanks so much! The Shepherds Pie recipe is the closest I could find to the one I loved in my childhood. It is also good made with ground beef.
      I’m just about done with the bottling. One or two more bottles to go!!
      I’ve gently escorted six of my “ladies” out of my kitchen during the extraction process. They are so sweet when they are inside, but I feel obligated to show them the door. πŸ™‚

  6. Jar Of Salt says:

    Sounds and looks absolutely heavenly….

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