Sweet Shepherd’s Pie

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Shepherd’s Pie. What a comforting dish! It is definitely one of those classic, family-friendly dishes, and it’s been a staple in our house for a long time. Recently, I wanted to create something a little bit more hands-on than my usual one-pot wonders for meal prep, and I also had the task this week of cooking up a dinner for the family. So I decided to hit two foodie birds with one pie (see what I did there?), and use it as an opportunity to take a little twist on a classic!

I felt inspired to try two versions of this recipe – both plant-powered, but one with predominantly animal protein, and the other with plant (from chickpeas and lentils!). I wanted to show you guys that adopting plant-based diet habits and changes doesn’t have mean a total change to being vegetarian or vegan – actually, by making some simple swaps and additions (such as adding the tinned peas to this pie, or swapping half the meat in your dish for beans or lentils), you ARE taking a plant-based approach, and you’ll thank yourself for it!

 

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Recipe (Serves 5)

Version #1: Lean Beef Mince Shepherd’s Pie

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Ingredients

  • 1 tbps extra virgin olive oil, for cooking
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp flat leaf parsley
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried sage
  • 1 garlic clove, finely diced
  • 1 red onion, finely diced
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled, sliced into coins, then halved
  • 2 sticks of celery, sliced into semi circles
  • 250g button mushrooms
  • 1 400g tin of peas
  • 1 400ml tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 500g of lean beef mince
  • 300ml of water
  • 750g Sweet Potato (or 2 Medium Sized)
  • 1 knob of butter (I used Dollop Ghee in the first recipe and Cocobrew Cacao Butter in the second!)

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C (fan oven). Line a baking tray with tinfoil, and roast the sweet potatoes until soft (time depends on the size of the potato).
  2. Set a large pot on a medium heat, and add the olive oil.
  3. Add the garlic and chopped vegetables, and cook for 4-5 minutes until the onions are translucent.
  4. Next, add the herbs and red wine vinegar, and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  5. Add the beef mince, and cook until browned, separating it as it cooks.
  6. Add the chopped tomatoes and tomato puree, followed by the 300ml of water (you can use water from refilling the chopped tomatoes can, that way you get all of the juice!)
  7. Finally, add the peas, and stir everything up until well mixed.
  8. Bring to the boil, and then turn the heat down to the simmer, cover, and cook for 20 minutes.
  9. When the sweet potatoes are ready, allow to cool, then peel off the skin.
  10. Create your sweet potato toppings by mashing the flesh with the knob of butter, and a dash of cinnamon.
  11. Turn off the heat on the pot after 20 minutes, and place your dish for the pie on the counter.
  12. Add the mince and vegetable filling to the dish, ensuring it is spread out evenly.
  13. Scoop the sweet potato mash on top, spread it out smoothly using the back of a spoon.
  14. Bake the pie in the oven for 20 minutes, until the topping is a golden-tipped and the sauce is bubbling a little underneath.
  15. Remove from the oven, serve and enjoy!

Version #2: Chickpea Lentil Shepherd’s Pie

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Ingredients

  • 1 tbps extra virgin olive oil, for cooking
  • 1 tsp tomato puree
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp flat leaf parsley
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried sage
  • 1 garlic clove, finely diced
  • 1 red onion, finely diced
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled, sliced into coins, then halved
  • 2 sticks of celery, sliced into semi circles
  • 250g button mushrooms
  • 1 400g tin of chickpeas
  • 1 400g tin of Bijoux Vert Lentils
  • 1 400ml tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 300ml of water

Method

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200C (fan oven). Line a baking tray with tinfoil, and roast the sweet potatoes until soft (time depends on the size of the potato).
  2. Set a large pot on a medium heat, and add the olive oil.
  3. Add the garlic and chopped vegetables, and cook for 4-5 minutes until the onions are translucent.
  4. Next, add the herbs and red wine vinegar, and cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  5. Next,  add the chickpeas, lentils, chopped tomatoes and tomato puree, followed by the 300ml of water (you can use water from refilling the chopped tomatoes can, that way you get all of the juice!). Stir everything up until well mixed.
  6. Bring to the boil, and then turn the heat down to the simmer, cover, and cook for 20 minutes.
  7. When the sweet potatoes are ready, allow to cool, then peel off the skin.
  8. Create your sweet potato toppings by mashing the flesh with the knob of butter, and a dash of cinnamon.
  9. Turn off the heat on the pot after 20 minutes, and place your dish for the pie on the counter.
  10. Add the filling to the dish, ensuring it is spread out evenly.
  11. Scoop the sweet potato mash on top, spread it out smoothly using the back of a spoon.
  12. Bake the pie in the oven for 20 minutes, until the topping is a golden-tipped and the sauce is bubbling a little underneath.
  13. Remove from the oven, serve and enjoy!

Enjoy guys! Let me know which recipe you try – or maybe you’ll try both! Tga me if you do – @theirishbalance on Instagram/Twitter/Facebook! Hopefully these two versions of a plant-based meal show you that you can have a plant-powered meal with and without meat in there!

Ciara 🙂 x

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