Shepherd's pie is a full meal that was mainly used to fill tummies in a cost-efficient way. After all, it would meet both criteria and taste good as well. What if you could make it tastier, reduce the amount of fat and have more on your plate while still being cost-efficient? Well, just follow this recipe and you will meet all these criteria!
- 8 to 10 medium-size white potatoes
- 1/4 cup of 2% milk
- 2 tablespoons of margarine
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 pinch of pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon of crushed garlic
- 1 pouch of onion soup mix
- 2 lbs of ground beef
- 1 can of sliced mushrooms
- 2 cans of corn kernels
- 1 large pot with a lid
- 1 can opener
- 1 wooden spoon
- 1 teaspoon
- 1 tablespoon
- 1 measuring cup (1/4)
- 1 potato masher
- 1 small roasting pan or deep oven dish
Steps to follow:
- Mashed potatoes coming up! First, you peel 8 to 10 medium-size potatoes. I use white potatoes but you can also use red potatoes. Wash them thoroughly. Dice them into small cubes to reduce the cooking time. Put them in the pot and add enough cold water to cover them well, about an inch above the potatoes. The water level should be no higher than 2 inches away from the edge of the pot. This way, when the water boils, the pot will not overflow and make a mess on the top of the stove.
- Take care of the meat! First, heat up a cooking pan deep enough to hold the meat. Instead of using margarine to melt in your pan, you can use cooking spray if you want a lower fat content. Stir the meat consistently and cook it thoroughly. If you are using regular ground beef, you will notice a lot of liquid fat in the fan. When the meat is cooked, I suggest that you drain it. If you prefer less fat and more meat in the end, I suggest that you buy some lean or extra-lean ground beef. Season with salt, pepper, add the mushrooms and the onion soup mix. Mix all the ingredients well.
- Mashing up the potatoes. Once your potatoes are cooked (your fork can go through them easily), drain the excess water (unless you prefer to use this vitamin-rich water to mash your potatoes instead of milk, as it is fat free). Instead of the 1/4 cup of milk, you can use the cooking water of the potatoes, skimmed milk or cream and add it to the potatoes. Add a pinch of salt, a pinch of pepper and 1/2 teaspoon of crushed garlic. Also add 2 tablespoons of margarine (or butter), then start mashing the potatoes to the consistency of your choice.
- Preheat the oven. Preheat the oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit as it will reach the desired temperature faster and will reduce the cooking time.
- Set it all up. Drain the meat to get rid of the extra fat. Lay it down in the dish and spread it evenly. Open, drain and layer the 2 cans of corn kernels evenly on top of the meat. Then spread the mashed potatoes on top. You can always use a fork and spread a bit of butter or margarine on top and sprinkle some paprika to add a touch of color.
- Cooking time! Put the uncovered roasting pan or dish in the oven for about 30 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy! Serve a portion containing all three layers to your family and guests. I assure you they will love it. Encourage them to taste it first before adding any seasoning as you will see it usually doesn't need it.
Some of you may think that using lean or extra-lean may make this dish more expensive but if you really think about it, this is not the case. With the less expensive regular ground beef, you end up with more fat that you should drain anyway as it is unhealthy, so you end up with less meat on your plate. On the other hand, the lean or extra-lean meat has little or no fat to drain, which means you have more meat in that package. If you are paying for it, you may as well fill your tummy with it. Enjoy this tasty dish alone or with family and guests. This amount will often give you more than a meal's worth of food -- you do not need to worry about cooking your next meal, just heat it up. It is often even tastier as the layers mix well together.