Shepherd’s Pie: A Great British Classic

This recipe was inspired by Gordon Ramsay’s shepherd’s pie recipe, but with my own tweaks here and there. It seems like a lot of ingredients and work involved, but the steps are actually pretty simple (though rather time-consuming).

What you need:

  • 500gr potatoes, peeled & diced
  • 300gr minced beef (you can replace this with minced lamb, pork, or turkey)
  • 3 sticks of carrot, diced
  • 3 sticks of celery, diced
  • 2 large yellow onions, diced
  • 6 cloves of garlic (2 cloves finely chopped for the beef mixture and 4 whole cloves for the mashed potato topping)
  • 2-3 tablespoons of worcester sauce
  • 2-3 tablespoons of tomato puree
  • 1/3 cup of red wine
  • 1/3 cup of chicken stock (you can replace this with beef or vegetable stock)
  • 250gr parmesan cheese, grated (I’m very fond of cheesy and creamy stuffs, so you can reduce this if preferred)
  • A handful of thyme & rosemary
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • 4 tablespoons of olive oil (it doesn’t matter if you use canola oil or peanut oil instead)

Let’s start with the garlic mashed potato first:

  • Boil potatoes along with whole garlic cloves until tender. Drain and mash them. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Fold in half of grated parmesan cheese.
  • Gordon Ramsay’s recipe calls for 2 egg yolks to be added. I don’t really see the point in doing this. If you have leftover egg yolks from other recipes, I guess you can include this step. Otherwise, you can omit this altogether.
  • If you like your mashed potato to be creamy and smooth, add 2 tablespoons of butter and 1/4 cup of milk. Stir until butter has melted and milk has been completely absorbed by the potatoes.

Now we move on to the beef mixture:

  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celcius.
  • Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed or heatproof saucepan over medium high heat. Throw in yellow onions and saute until wilted and slightly caramelized. Add beef and continue to cook for a couple of minutes until all the beef has turned darker color.
  • Add garlic, thyme leaves and chopped rosemary. Stir until all are combined before throwing in carrots and celeries. Cook for several minutes until carrots and celeries have softened slightly, reduce heat to medium.
  • Add worcester sauce and tomato puree, and stir until all are combined. Pour red wine and slowly cook until alcohol has evaporated. Pour chicken stock and continue to cook until mixture has thickened and no longer watery. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Finally, it’s time to layer and bake the pie:

  • For this recipe, I used a square 8.5 inch baking dish. Pour the beef mixture at the bottom of the dish and cover it with mashed potato. Sprinkle the remaining parmesan cheese and fork the top to create ridges.
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes until the top has turned golden brown.

All in all, I spent an hour preparing the ingredients and cooking the mashed potato and beef mixture. This is excluding the baking time.

Since I’m not much of a meat eater, this recipe yielded the right proportion of mashed potato and beef mixture for me. You can adjust the amount of meat depending on how carnivorous you are 😉

Bon Appétit!

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