Okay, first things first, if you do not use lamb you are not making shepards pie, you are making cottage pie. This recipe works for both but it was originally meant for ground lamb and not ground beef. Second, this is a super-fast semi-homemade recipe that we like to make when we are tired of all the Thanksgiving cooking, and yet it does use a lot of those leftovers. It is warm and filling and great comfort food when you just cannot look at one more turkey recipe.
You will need:
1lb ground lamb
1/2 onion diced
salt and pepper to taste
1-large bag of frozen peas and carrots or you can use 2-3 cups of leftover veggies from thanksgiving. peas and carrots are traditional, but green beans work just as well.
4 potatoes cooked and mashed until they are creamy (again if you are using leftovers this is about 3 cups of mashed potatoes)
1- pkt brown gravy made following packet directions (yep, you guessed it this can also be leftovers, use about 1-1/2 cups, we also like to make the gravy with some Guinness instead of water, but that is up to you)
1/4 cup butter (you won’t use it all)
an 8×8 baking dish (or equivalent)
Lightly grease your baking dish
Brown the lamb in a skillet, you can pre-cook the onion but we just dice the onion extra fine and let it cook with the lamb. Note that lamb is much greasier than beef so resist the temptation to add any sort of lubricant to the skillet. When the lamb/onions are done, drain, then add to your baking dish.
Add vegetables to the baking dish
Add gravy to the baking dish.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Stir all ingredients to evenly disperse around the dish.
Drop potatoes evenly around the top, then using a spatula or frosting tool evenly spread the potatoes until they fully cover the surface.
Dot butter around the top of the potatoes.
Cover and cook in a 350-degree oven for about 25 minutes. If you want a crispier top, take the cover off and put it under the broiler for 5 more minutes.
Serve hot or cold, but either way, don’t forget the beer.