This past weekend the boyfriend and I were visiting the Midwest, and a what wonderful trip it was! Good friends, good food, good times. It was a nostalgic trip which got the memories flowing.
Our week sort of exploded when we got home (why does that always happen post-vacay?) Some comfort food was desperately needed, and I was inspired by our recent trip back home. I couldn't think of anything more comforting and nostalgic than my Mom's Shepherd's Pie. It's a tasty, easy, and economical recipe that's made even easier if you have leftover veggies and/or mashed potatoes lying around. I've tweaked just a few things from the original recipe (ex. added more mashed potatoes, because when is that ever a bad thing?), but it's mostly the same wonderful hotdish I grew up with. (For those of you not familiar with the term "hotdish," it's the Midwestern term for casserole!)
This dish isn't known for being pretty, I'll admit. It won't win any prizes for plating on Iron Chef America. BUT, on the savory, wonderful, comfy taste? Definitely a win.
Meaty, veggie goodness covered with mashed potatoes and melted cheese? Yeah, that's a beautiful thing.
This also freezes well for "emergency lunches," so it's great for practicality as well as taste. (I mean, it's Midwestern, so of course it's practical.) It ain't fancy, but it's good eatin'!
Mom's Shepherd's Pie
(adapted from my Mom's recipe)
1 lb. ground beef (I use the leanest I could find)
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 onion, chopped
1 Tbsp. flour
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
can of mushrooms (or 4 oz. fresh, if you like, sauteed with the garlic, onions, and beef)
1/2 cup ketchup
1 cup water
2 cups mixed veggies, cooked and drained
5 cups hot mashed potatoes (or 3 lbs. fresh potatoes, cooked and mashed)
1 cup shredded cheese
Saute garlic and onion in large skilled until fragrant (30 seconds), and then add in ground beef and saute until meet is browned. Drain off any extra fat. Add in flour, salt, pepper, chili powder, Worcestershire, mushrooms, ketchup and water. Combine well and cook until mixture is thick. Stir in veggies. Put in 2 quart or 9x13 casserole dish. Top with mashed potatoes and shredded cheese. Bake in 425 degree oven for 15 minutes.