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Shepherd’s Pie

  • 3 large russet (baking) potatoes, peeled, cubed
  • ½ cup AE Chive or French Onion Dip
  • 5 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 2 cups button mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • ½ cup beer or dry red wine
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 cup sliced frozen carrots

In a large saucepan boil the potatoes in salted water to cover until tender. Drain thoroughly and return potatoes to the saucepan. Off heat mash potatoes with dip, 4 tablespoons butter and the egg, stirring vigorously until the egg is incorporated. Season potatoes with salt and pepper to taste, cover, and keep warm.

In a large sauté pan heat the olive oil over medium-high until hot. Add the ground beef and cook until meat is no longer pink, stirring with a spoon to break up any large chunks. Pour off the fat, return the pan to the burner and add the mushrooms and onion. Cook, stirring frequently, until mushrooms brown and onion softens, about 8 minutes. Deglaze with the beer or wine and simmer until nearly evaporated. Stir in the remaining tablespoon of butter and sprinkle the flour over the meat and mushrooms; cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Gradually stir in the broth and simmer until the sauce is thickened. Fold in the peas and carrots; season with salt and pepper.

Preheat oven to 425ºF. Coat four 1½-cup ramekins with nonstick spray. (You may also make Shepherd’s Pie in a 1½-quart casserole dish.) Fill each ramekin with about 1¼ cups meat mixture, then divide mashed potatoes evenly over the tops. Place ramekins on a baking sheet to catch drips and bake for 20 minutes or just until potatoes begin to brown in spots and filling is bubbly. (If using a large casserole dish instead of ramekins, increase baking time by 10 to 15 minutes.)

Makes Makes 4 generous servings