Shepherd's Pie

by Laura Frerichs, Tastemaker in Residence

Another comfort food staple in our house in fall and winter. This meat and potatoes dish will please just about any picky eater. Serve with a side of greens and squash for a splash of color on the plate.

1 1⁄2 pounds potatoes, peeled and quartered 1 medium onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp vegetable/olive oil 2 medium carrots, chopped
1 pound raw ground lamb or beef 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 1⁄2 tsp chopped fresh thyme Pinch of grated or ground nutmeg 3⁄4 cup beef or chicken broth
1 tsp fresh parsley
Salt and black pepper to taste


  1. Place potatoes in a large pot of cold water over medium heat. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain, reserving 1⁄2 cup of the cooking water. Transfer the potatoes to a bowl and mash with a fork or potato masher, adding the reserved cooking water along with 1 Tbsp butter and salt and white pepper to taste. Beat with a wooden spoon or potato masher until fluffy. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  3. Combine veg. oil, onion, carrot and celery in a large skillet. Cook over low- medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender but not brown, 10 to 15 minutes. Increase the heat to medium and add the ground lamb/beef.
  4. Cook, breaking up meat with a spoon until it loses its pink color, 5 to 10 minutes. Spoon off excess fat. Stir in flour. Cook for 2 minutes. Add broth, herbs, nutmeg, and salt and pepper to taste. Reduce heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 5 minutes.
  5. Transfer to a greased 9-inch pie plate or a 8 x 8-inch baking dish. Spread mashed potatoes over the top, making peaks with a fork. Scatter 2 Tbsp butter, cut into small pieces, over the top of the potatoes. Bake until the potatoes are browned and the dish is heated through, 30 to 35 minutes.
  6. Let cool slightly, then serve directly from the baking dish.

Adapted from The Joy of Cooking.

Find more recipes from Laura and Adam at Loon Organics