Cottage Pie

september2008-191

Have you ever heard of a Cottage Pie before? I hadn’t. I have always called this dish Shepherd’s Pie regardless of the meat used. Traditionally Shepherd’s Pie is made with lamb, something I am not a fan of. I can say “I do not like lamb” because I have given it many tries. I think ground lamb (with spices and herbs mixed in) is tolerable, but the thought of lamb chops or leg or lamb make my stomach turn.

At Easter I ate at a brunch buffet with my in-laws. As I was eyeing all the lovely food options, I saw a man (actually a teenage boy) standing at the carving station with a beautiful piece of meat in front of him. I thought to myself “Wow that looks like some good  prime rib, I will have that for lunch.” I waited in line, and as I held my plate up to him I said “I will take a couple pieces of prime rib.” He slapped the meat on my plate without a word.  I returned to the table and eagerly cut into my “prime rib”.  I took one bite and almost regurgitated it all over the table. I leaned over to my husband and said “DO NOT get the prime rib, I think there is something wrong with it.” He took a bite of mine and agreed it had a funny flavor. After awhile we heard my husband’s uncle and cousin talking about the lamb –my stomach turned even more. That experience has tainted my perception of lamb, because lamb tastes nothing like prime rib.

I digress. Since I do not like lamb I could not called this dish Shepherd’s Pie, it most certainly is a Cottage Pie made with ground beef. It is tasty. I found my recipe on a really cool website called Cooking for Engineers. They lay out their recipes in a unique manner, for those who like to cook and have an analytical mind. Head over there and check out this recipe for Cottage Pie.

Great looking recipes from blogs I read:

Family Pleasin’ Shepherd’s Pie from Picky Palate

Vegetarian Shepherd’s Pie from Mennonite Girls Can Cook

Easy Shepherd’s Pie from Simply Recipes

Cottage Pie from What Geeks Eat

My recipes:

Rachael Ray’s Shepherd’s Pie Redo

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Recipe Redo

I subscribe to the magazine Every Day with Rachael Ray. I love her quick and easy recipes. In the April 2008 issue, Rachael has redone some of our favorite comfort food recipes, making them more figure friendly. One recipe Rachael redid was Shepherd’s Pie that had 311 calories per serving, compared to the 622 it had before. I redid Rachael’s redo with my own even lower calorie and just as tasty Turkey Shepherd’s Pie. I will include Rachael’s recipe and my own. Enjoy!

SHEPHERD’S PIE
(from Every Day with Rachael Ray April 08)
311 Calories/ serving
Serves 8

2 lb yellow-fleshed potatoes
2 T extra virgin olive oil
10 oz cremini mushroom slices
2 carrots, cut into 1 in pieces
2 parsnips, cut into 1 in pieces
1 onion, chopped
1 lb 93 % lean ground beef
1/4 c flour
1 1/2 c beef broth
1/2 c canned crushed tomatoes
salt and pepper
3/4 c 2 % milk
1 1/2 lb baby spinach

In a large saucepan, combine the potatoes with enough salted water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and return to the pot, cover.

In a large, deep skillet, heat 1/2 T olive oil over high heat, add the mushrooms and cook stirring until browned, about 5 minutes. Arrange in a greased 9×13 baking dish in an even layer.

In same skillet, heat 1 T olive oil over medium high heat. Add the carrots, parsnips, and onions. Cook until crisp-tender, 6-7 minutes. Add the beef and cook, breaking it up, until no longer pink, about 4 minutes. Stir in the flour. Add the beef broth and tomatoes, and simmer, stirring until thickened, about 5 minutes, season with salt and pepper. Ladle the meat mixture over the mushrooms.

position a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 400. Add the milk to the potatoes and mash. Season with salt and pepper.

In the reserved skillet, bring 1 c water to a boil. Add the spinach and cook, turning until wilted, about 2 minutes, season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a colander, press to extract any liquid.

Arrange the spinach over the meat mixture, then spoon the potatoes over top. Drizzle with remaining 1/2 T olive oil. Bake until golden, about 25 minutes.

MY TURKEY SHEPHERD’S PIE
242 Calories/ Serving
Serves 8

2 lb yellow-fleshed potatoes
2 T extra virgin olive oil
1 c carrots, cut into 1 in pieces
1 c celery, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 lb 93 % lean ground turkey
1/4 c flour
1 1/2 c chicken broth
1/2 c canned crushed tomatoes
salt and pepper
3/4 c skim milk
1 1/2 lb baby spinach

In a large saucepan, combine the potatoes with enough salted water to cover by 1 inch. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and return to the pot, cover.

In same skillet, heat 1 T olive oil over medium high heat. Add the carrots, celery, and onions. Cook until crisp-tender, 6-7 minutes. Add the turkey and cook, breaking it up, until no longer pink, about 4 minutes. Add spinach and cook until wilted, about 3-5 minutes. Stir in the flour. Add the broth and tomatoes, and simmer, stirring until thickened, about 5 minutes, season with salt and pepper. Ladle the meat mixture into greased 9×13 pan.

Position a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat to 400. Add the milk to the potatoes and mash. Season with salt and pepper.

Spoon the potatoes over top. Drizzle with remaining 1/2 T olive oil. Bake until golden, about 25 minutes.