Monday, October 8, 2012

Lightened Up Bison Shepherd's Pie

We just got our first snow, and shepherd's pie is the ultimate comfort food! I made it with ground bison (fine with beef or lamb), and lightened it up a bit by using mostly cauliflower in place of mashed potatoes (that way you can just eat more!!). Of course, you could use plain spuds if that's what you like!

I know it is not the TRADITIONAL shepherd's pie with lamb. That's okay. You don't need to leave any angry comments or anything. It's not a quick recipe, and it dirties a lot of dishes-may be preferred for weekend cooking! That said, it is so worth the wait!

What you need:
3 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
1 lb. ground bison
handful of green beans, cut into 1" pieces
handful of frozen peas
onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T flour
1 C red wine
1/2 C broth

Your favorite recipe for mashed potatoes, about 6 cups (or use mine, below)

For the faux-ta-toes
1 -1.5 heads cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
1-2 potatoes, diced
2 T butter
2 T chicken broth
2 T cream cheese
salt & pepper
garlic powder

What to do:
Preheat the oven to 400
Start boiling water for potatoes and cauliflower (see separate directions below)
Put the cut carrots in a large frying pan with a little oil, let cook for a few minutes.
Add the meat and brown. Drain fat and, if desired, rinse meat in a strainer to clean off additional grease
Add onions, green beans, peas, ketchup/tomato paste, garlic and flour to pan, mix well.
Add wine to pan, turn heat to low, and reduce. When it's reduced, add chicken broth and reduce again, until you have a gravy-like consistency.

Spray a 13x9 pan with non-stick spray
Spread the meat in the bottom of the pan.

Top with potatoes (see below)

Put in oven for about 20 minutes, until potatoes brown.

Potato/cauliflower directions
Boil a large pot of water or 2 smaller pots of water. Put diced potatoes into the water. About 5 minutes later, add cauliflower to boiling water. Allow both to soften (10-15 minutes for potatoes, depending on how small they're cut, 6-8 minutes for cauliflower). Drain both and pat dry without rinsing. Put in food processor and add butter, broth, cream cheese, salt, pepper, and garlic powder to taste. Mix to desired consistency and taste test.

Verdict/what I'd change

This was DELICIOUS! I'd probably use an 8 x 8" pan for a "deeper" pie if I made it again. Otherwise, it was fantastic!

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