This beefy take on a classic shepherd’s pie is filled with tender vegetables, fresh herbs and covered in a pillowy layer of mashed potatoes. Good luck getting this to the table.
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Shepherd’s Pie Filling
Place the peeled and diced potatoes into a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Over high-heat, cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, uncover, decrease the heat to maintain a simmer and cook until the potatoes are easily crushed with a pair of tongs.
Place the whole milk in a microwave-safe container, place in the microwave and heat-through for 35 seconds.
Drain the potatoes in a colander and then return them to the saucepan.
Mash the potatoes, then add the warm whole milk, the unsalted butter, salt and pepper to taste and continue to mash until smooth. Stir in the egg yolk until well combined.
While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the filling for the Shepherd’s pie. Begin by placing the canola oil in a 12-inch sauté pan and set over medium-high heat. Once the oil starts to shimmer, add the onion, carrot, celery and sauté until they just start to take on a little colour, about 3 – 4 minutes. Add the garlic and stir to combine.
Add the beef, salt and pepper to the pan and cook until browned and cooked through, approximately 4- 6 minutes. Add the tomato paste and continue to cook for 1 minute. Add the flour and cook for another minute.
Add the beef or chicken broth, Worcestershire sauce, rosemary, thyme and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer slowly for 10 – 12 minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly. At this point, taste the mix and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Pre-heat the oven to 350ºF. Add the corn and peas to the beef mixture and spread evenly into an 11×7-inch glass baking dish. Top with the mashed potatoes: spread the potatoes around the edges first to prevent the mixture from bubbling over and smooth over with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese.
Place the baking dish onto a parchment lined sheet tray to catch any possible spills during the cooking time. Bake for 25 minutes or until the potatoes just start to brown. Remove to a cooling rack for 15 minutes before serving.