Veg Shepard’s Pie

I did some experimenting this weekend. I attempted a vegetarian shepard’s pie, with out fake meat. I’m not against fake meat entirely, but in baked or long cooking dishes, it never seems to hold up, texture wise. So to substitute I used lentils and mushrooms to give this dish the hearty quality that is sometimes missing in a dinner made only of mashed potatoes and veg.

This was a full on experiment, no measuring, no timing, no over thinking. I have to say it’s pretty good. In the future I would maybe pre-cook the lentils.  I was worried about them getting to mushy in the oven and ended up with lentils that had a pretty substantial bite to them… not necessarily in a good way, but other than that i think it was a good first try.

Sort-of recipe:

Parsley Mashed potatoes:

  • 4 red skinned potatoes
  • minced garlic
  • margerine
  • fat-free half and half
  • lots of parsley
  • pepper

Boil the potatoes in salted water until tender,  mash with a small pat of the margerine, a splash of the half and half, one clove of minced garlic and LOTS of parsley. Add pepper to taste. Set aside

Filling (amounts are estimates):

  •  1 onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup chopped carrot
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 1 cup chopped mushrooms
  • teaspoon tomato paste
  • Veg. broth
  • fresh thyme
  • cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas
  • salt and pepper to taste

Saute the onion, garlic and carrot in a bit of olive oil for a few minutes to get soft, add the mushrooms and lentils. once the mushrooms cook down add the tomato paste, broth and a few springs of thyme and simmer until lentils are soft, add more liquid if needed.  once lentils are cooked, use corn starch to thicken sauce if needed and add peas. Assemble pie in oven safe dish filling first them add potatoes on top. Store, or bake in a 350 oven for about 20minutes or until top is golden brown.

When I make dishes like this is usually assemble them into single serve disposable mini-loaf pans then freeze a few for days when I don’t want to cook… not the most “green” thing, but i do what I can



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