Friday, March 12, 2010

Shepherd's Pie

One 16 oz can of corn kernels

3 Yukon Gold potatoes

One large yellow onion, diced and sauteed in olive oil till soft, sweet, and golden brown.

One pound of ground lamb

2 cloves of garlic, minced or sent through a garlic press.

1/2 stick of butter

Sea salt to taste and 1/2 to 1 cup of shredded Gruyere cheese

Boil the peeled Yukon Gold potatoes, then mash them or put them through a ricer(my choice). Add the butter and cream it into the potatoes. Add sea salt to taste, and set aside.
Next saute the diced onions in 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with a touch of sea salt. When the onions are golden add the ground lamb and saute it, allowing it to brown a little. Add the garlic to the lamb and mix well.

In a bowl mix the corn kernels and the lamb-onion mixture and then spoon it into a medium sized casserole dish like the one pictured. Then spoon the riced potato mixture on top of the lamb and corn, and spread it as though putting icing on a cake. Then sprinkle the Gruyere onto the mashed potatoes.

You are not so much cooking this as re-heating it. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes until heated through. Now turn on the broiler, and allow the potato crust to gently brown. Be vigilant and keep a close watch for a few minutes . This is not the time to change the TV channel or take the dogs out.

I feel it is important to keep tasting as you are cooking. Add more garlic, less salt, more butter. So much of cooking is done by sight, taste, and feel.I looked at Craig Claiborne's recipe for Shepherd's Pie in the 1990 edition of the New York Times Cookbook but decided against it. I am sure it would be delicious, but I wanted something simpler, with fewer steps. I trusted my instincts. Ironic, that the more cookbooks I own, the more I cook by the seat of my pants.

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