I have been scouring familiar blogs and websites for easy recipes that my husband could prepare while I am incubating our twins. We have some leftover mashed potatoes from a few nights ago that desperately need to be used. Luckily, my oldish-potatoes triggered a memory of a simple Shepard's Pie recipe that my friend, Claire makes with some regularity. I love that it is quick to whip up and incorporates flavors that we love. Really, what is not to love???? Cheese, potatoes, beef, veggies...all in one dish...YUM! I think this meal will deliver on both ease of preparation and homey, comforting flavors.
Claire's Shepard's Pie
1 lb ground beef
1 packet brown gravy mix
1 package frozen mixed vegetables
Shredded cheddar cheese
Lawry's Seasoned Salt (optional)
1/2 of a diced white onion (optional)
Brown ground beef in a skillet until cooked (add some Lawry's Seasoned Salt and onion while beef is browning, if desired). In a small saucepan, make gravy according to package directions. Once ground beef is done, stir in vegetables and gravy until desired sauciness. Transfer beef/veggie/gravy mixture to a pie pan or 8-inch square pan. Top with mashed potatoes. Sprinkle with cheese. Place under broiler until cheese is melted.
We sprinkled some Lawry's Seasoned Salt over the meat and sauteed half of a diced white onion while the meat was browning. Also, we didn't make the gravy separate. Instead, the husband just sprinkled the gravy mix over the browned meat and added the cup of water, then let it reduce to the proper consistency. I must say, it worked perfectly and we didn't have to wash another pan.
This earns my fan-freakin'-tastic rating! It was soooo easy to make and totally delicious! It was comfort food at it's best. My son loved it, too...he kept making "ummm" noises as he happily ate his dinner. My husband and I had "seconds", and then he was actually contemplating "thirds". I can't believe I have never tried to make this dish before. Seriously, we were totally missing out.
Our shortcut with the gravy (see notes) worked out really well, so I don't think we would bother ever making the gravy separate. As easy as it was originally, I love that we cut out another step. This recipe is a keeper, and will be put into regular rotation!!!! Thanks, Claire!