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Having spent all Saturday doing nothing at all, I was totally bored by the time evening came around.  I needed something to do to make my evening better than my uneventful day.  Well, I did what any budding baker would do – I baked, baked, baked, with some cooking thrown in just for fun!  I hope you all enjoy hearing about my St. Patrick’s Day baking binge in my next few posts.

As an ode to St. Patty’s Day, I baked up a delicious Shepherd’s Pie using a simple yet absolutely wonderful recipe from Rachel Ray. The potato topping from the recipe includes sour cream and heavy cream, and it just makes it delish!  I included Rachel’s original recipe, however, instead of ground beef or lamb, I actually used Morning Star Crumbles and vegetable broth instead of beef.

Shepherd’s Pie (from Rachel Ray: 30 Minute Meals)

  • 2 pounds potatoes, such as russet, peeled and cubed
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream or softened cream cheese
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup cream, for a lighter version substitute vegetable or chicken broth
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
  • 1 3/4 pounds ground beef or ground lamb
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup beef stock or broth
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire, eyeball it
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, a couple of handfuls
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves


Boil potatoes in salted water until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain potatoes and pour them into a bowl. Combine sour cream, egg yolk and cream. Add the cream mixture into potatoes and mash until potatoes are almost smooth.

While potatoes boil, preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil to hot pan with beef or lamb. Season meat with salt and pepper. Brown and crumble meat for 3 or 4 minutes. If you are using lamb and the pan is fatty, spoon away some of the drippings. Add chopped carrot and onion to the meat. Cook veggies with meat 5 minutes, stirring frequently. In a second small skillet over medium heat cook butter and flour together 2 minutes. Whisk in broth and Worcestershire sauce. Thicken gravy 1 minute. Add gravy to meat and vegetables. Stir in peas.

Preheat broiler to high. Fill a small rectangular casserole with meat and vegetable mixture. Spoon potatoes over meat evenly. Top potatoes with paprika and broil 6 to 8 inches from the heat until potatoes are evenly browned. Top casserole dish with chopped parsley and serve.

About to go into the oven...

All finished... yum!