One dish meals are my jam and Shepherd's pie, in one form or another has been one of my dinner staples for years. Back when we were poor hippie vegetarians, I made Mollie Katzen's version at least three times a month. (Eggplant, mushrooms and other vegetables, with yogurt mixed into the mashed potato crust.) Shepherd's pie is a great thrifty meal, since you can make use of whatever you happen to have on hand. Traditional shepherd's pie is made with lamb, but I don't think I have ever used lamb.
Food in my Beard's chicken tikka masala sheperd's pie was the contender on Saturday night. Made with boneless chicken thighs cooked in crushed tomatoes, garlic, ginger, jalapenos and Indian spices. The crust is a combination of mashed potatoes and mashed roasted cauliflower. It was delicious. The recipe calls for five jalapenos, so I worried it would be unbearably spicy, but the bit of Greek yogurt stirred into the dish cuts the heat just enough. The chicken was tender and the cauliflower, which was roasted in a hot oven before before being mashed with the potatoes added an earthy, smoky flavor.
|The "meat" of this pie|
Mel's Kitchen Cafe's Shepherd's pie was Sunday's dinner. It's made with ground beef and vegetables in a broth-based sauce. The mashed potato topping has a lot of cheese and there's an egg yolk stirred in for extra richness. "Rich" is an apt word for this pie. Jon and the kids preferred this one to the chicken pie, but I preferred the chicken one because it seemed healthier (higher quality vegetables and no cheese) and had a more interesting flavor. Not to say that Mel's recipe is bad! It was tasty, satisfying, and a bit decadent.
|Before the crust is added|