Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Crowd-Pleasing Shepherd's Pie

I call it crowd-pleasing because it has been pleasing a lot of my crowds for almost ten years.

I have always liked experimenting with food, and one day I was visiting with my dad and he made me shepherd's pie for lunch. Now, while his rendition may have been closer to authentic, I thought it was gross (sorry, Dad) and that I could really make it a whole lot better. So, I did :)

This recipe is one of the first I created on my own and remains a favorite of a lot of friends who have sampled it over the years. It's undergone a lot of refining, but this recipe is what I've found so far to be the most tasty. It's great for a no-hassle midweek meal, and it is completely customizable depending on your palate.

It's not gonna win any points for presentation, but I can guarantee you won't be disappointed in the taste!

1 package lean ground beef
Dried sage
About a half an onion, diced
A bunch of carrots (chopped)
A bunch of mushrooms (chopped...I use Baby Bella. Your choice)
1 zucchini
1 can of Campbell's Golden Mushroom soup
A bunch of potatoes (russet makes the best mashed, but red have better flavor)
Light sour cream

About 15-20 mins before you start cooking, prepare the potatoes by boiling them. I cut mine into pieces so they boil quicker.

Preheat your oven to 350

Heat meat in a skillet at medium-high heat with the onions, garlic, and spices. I use lean ground beef because there is too much grease runoff otherwise, and ruins the flavor. If you want to use regular ground beef and drain it, go for it. I'm just too lazy for that lol. Use as much of the spices as you want per your taste buds.

When meat is cooked through, add the carrots, mushrooms, and zucchini. Turn heat to medium and add the soup. Cook until the veggies are tender (especially the carrots) and the soup has coated everything.

When the potatoes are tender, drain and mash them, adding as milk, butter, and sour cream per your taste buds. When they are the consistency you want them, pour the meat mixture into a baking dish and top with the potatoes. Bake for about 15 minutes or until potatoes start to look golden in places.

Remove from oven and enjoy with some crusty french bread and a glass of red wine!

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