hi there!

I’m Mari.
On Marivelous Me! you’ll find recipes, food gifts, food I’ve traveled for and food solutions. Poke around, maybe you’ll find inspiration for something you’re working on. Enjoy! 


British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course

shepherd's pieshepherd's pieThe first time I had Shepherd's Pie was when I visited my friend, Jarrod, and his wife, Susse, in London. It was also the first time I was meeting Susse. Susse was radiant Scottish sunshine. She was totally at ease and totally charming; she chatted with me while sautéing chopped onions and ground meat with one hand and sipped from a glass of red wine with the other. She tossed in some frozen veggies, stirred a packet of Colman's Shepherd's Pie seasonings in a bowl with some water and poured it into the sizzling pot of ground meat and onions. The meat mixture was poured into a casserole dish, covered with mashed potatoes, a fork-tined crosshatch pattern was drawn over the top and then popped into the oven; along with a salad, dinner was cooked and on the table in about an hour. We chatted and laughed for hours. Did I mention it was a weeknight? Even though I didn't grow up eating it, Shepherd's Pie will forevermore be comfort food to me, thanks to that completely relaxed and warmhearted meal. 

For today's musical accompaniment, here's Don't You (Forget About Me) by Simple Minds. Why? Well...

  • It's a Scottish band - reference Susse
  • Lead singer Jim Kerr was married to Chrissie Hynde (she's American) - Jarrod and I were interns at Smart Design in New York
  • Jarrod and I started our internships on the same date, twenty years ago as of last week. If we don't cross paths (we rarely do), we always email on our Intern Start Date Anniversary, keeping tabs on what's going on in each other's lives, regardless of where we are in the world.
  • And lastly, The Breakfast Club was a seminal movie. 

So, hop over to YouTube and hop back because there's a Shepherd's Pie going in the oven and you're making it! Happy Friday!

shepherd's pie crosshatchIf I were to get all pedantic on you, traditionally Shepherd's Pie is made with lamb and Cottage Pie is made with beef. I imagine lamb is pretty common in the UK, much more so than beef, since cattle is so expensive to raise. However, since beef is common in the US, as is the term Shepherd's Pie, the two have become associated with one another.

Anyway, my Shepherd's Pie isn't even Cottage Pie since I make mine with ground turkey. One day, in the midst of making a Shepherd' Pie, I realized I didn't have any of the Colman's mix. (Tip: Always check your cupboards before embarking on a project) So I punted - made my own seasoning blend and haven't looked back. This makes a 9 x 13 casserole, so enough leftovers for freezing. The one key ingredient is soy sauce. (This isn't a Japanese dish, Mari.) I know. Most people don't have Marmite on hand and soy sauce is a good stand-in. What soy sauce adds, is richness in flavor (aka umami) that, trust me, you'll appreciate when you take a bite. 

Serves 6 as main course

1 tablespoon oil (canola, vegetable, olive, whatevs)
2 medium onions, peeled and diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 pounds ground turkey (I use one package of white and one package of dark)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 cups beef or chicken stock (low-sodium preferable)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons dried rosemary, chopped
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons dried sage
Pinch ground nutmeg
Sea salt & fresh ground black pepper
1/4-cup chopped flat leaf parsley
2-cups mixed frozen vegetables (I use the Trader Joe's brand that has carrots, peas, corn and string beans)
1-cup frozen peas
Recipe (6-cups or so) mashed cauliflower or mashed potatoes
1-cup shredded cheddar cheese (optional)
Branston Pickle, for serving
Watercress, for garnish (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

If you'd like cheesy mashed cauliflower or potatoes, stir the shredded cheese into your mashed vegetable. It doesn't matter whether the mashed vegetable is hot or cold. The cheese will melt in the oven either way. You'll see the cheese bits if you stir it in cold, more uniform in color if you stir it in hot. Set aside.

In a large pot or sauté pan, heat canola oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic, sauté for about 5 minutes. Add ground turkey and brown, crumbling the meat, for about 6 minutes. Drain fat and add the flour. Cook for a couple minutes to help remove the raw flour flavor. Add 1-3/4 cups broth to the pot. Add the tomato paste to the remaining stock to help dissolve it. Add the tomato paste slurry, soy sauce, rosemary, thyme, sage, nutmeg and parsley. Stir until the gravy thickens. Let the gravy cook down so it's a little more than a shiny coating. Turn off the heat and stir in the parsley, frozen mixed veggies and peas. Add the veggies in frozen. They will cook enough and this way the peas won't look too sad when you serve the pie. 

shepherd's pie fillingshepherd's pie topping mashed cauliflowerPour the ground meat mixture into a 9 x 13 casserole dish. Spread it out and spoon the mashed cauliflower or potato over the top. Don't make a Close Encounters of a Third Kind mountain with your mashed veggies; place spoonfuls all over the surface - it'll make spreading it out much easier. Smooth it out and with the back of a fork, make lines with the tines to break up the surface, which will make a much prettier dish once it's been browned. Pop it in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Turn your oven to broil and then broil until browned, about 5-10 minutes, depending on your oven. Let cool for 10 minutes. Serve with Branston Pickle, garnish with watercress and enjoy!

shepherd's pie servingshepherd's pie serving

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

« Make It Count | Main | Eau de Pizza Hut - What the What? »

References (9)

References allow you to track sources for this article, as well as articles that were written in response to this article.
  • Response
    SD Memory Card Recovery
  • Response
    Response: toy recalls
    marivelous.me - home - British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course
  • Response
    Response: back support
    marivelous.me - home - British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course
  • Response
    Response: mens gift ideas
    marivelous.me - home - British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course
  • Response
    marivelous.me - home - British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course
  • Response
    Response: posture brace
    marivelous.me - home - British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course
  • Response
    marivelous.me - home - British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course
  • Response
    Response: magic set
    marivelous.me - home - British Invasion: Shepherd's Pie - adapted, of course
  • Response
    㱤楶⁣污獳㴢瑯灢朢⁳瑹汥㴢潶敲晬潷㨠桩摤敮㬠桥楧桴㨠㤷灸㬠睩摴栺‱ 卷帘门咬口机 㤰㍰砻⁢慣歧牯畮携⁵牬⡨瑴瀺⼯睷眮橬桢挮捯洯瑥浰汥瑳⽤敦慵汴⽩浡来猯瑯灢朮橰朩⁲数敡琭砠ば砠ば砻⁷桩瑥⵳灡捥㨠湯牭慬㬠睯牤⵳灡捩湧㨠ば砻⁴數琭瑲慮獦潲洺潮攻⁣潬潲㨠牧戨〬〬〩㬠灡摤楮札扯瑴潭㨠ば砻⁰慤摩湧⵴潰㨠ば砻⁦潮琺‱㉰砠卩浳畮㬠灡摤楮札汥晴㨠ば砻慲杩渺‰灸㬠睩摯睳㨠ㄻ整瑥爭獰慣楮机潲浡氻⁰慤摩湧⵲楧桴㨠ば砻⁴數琭楮摥湴㨠ば砻‭睥扫楴⵴數琭獴牯步⵷楤瑨㨠ば砢㸍਼摩瘠捬慳猽≴潰∠獴祬攽≯癥牦汯眺⁨楤摥渻⁦潮琭獩穥㨠ㄲ灸㬠

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>