Monday, January 5, 2009

Vegetarian Shepard's Pie with Peppered Potato Topping

Got a new Vegetarian Cook Book from the library Saturday. I think I'll be trying a few things from this particular book. It is by Rose Reisman and I see her website has some pretty good recipes too.

I will type out the recipe as it appears in the book but I modified it quite a bit. It came out more like a vegetarian chili with potatoes on top! Also, just for the record, I didn't measure anything. I rarely do - sometimes this works and sometimes it fails.

Before I knew it, we had all dug in and I had not taken a picture of my lovely creation in it's prime! Promise to have more appetizing pictures in the future. This meal was enjoyed with a glass of our home brewed Merlot.

2tsp vegetable oil (I used olive oil)
2tsp minced garlic
1cup chopped onions
3/4cup finely chopped carrots
1 1/2cups prepared tomato pasta sauce (I used organic basil sauce)
1cup canned red kidney beans
1cup canned chickpeas
1/2cup vegetable stock (I had homemade chicken stock)
1 1/2tsp dried basil
2 bay leaves (I used a pinch of dried/ground bayleaves)
4cups diced potatoes
1/2cup 2% milk (I used skim)
1/3cup light sour cream
1/4tsp freshly ground pepper
3/4cup shredded cheddar cheese (I used Monterrey jack)
3tbsp grated Parmesan cheese (I just put this on the table)

1. In saucepan, heat oil on medium high. Add garlic, onions and carrots; cook 4 minutes or until onion is softened. Stir in tomato sauce, kidney beans, chickpeas, stock, basic and bay leaves; reduce heat to medium-low; cover and cook 15 minutes or until veggies are tender. Remove bay leaves (skip this if you just used ground leaves!). Transfer sauce to food processor; pulse on and off just until chunky (I completely didn't see that step and skipped it by accident!) Spread over bottom of baking dish.

2. Place potatoes in a saucepan; add cold water to cover. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer 10-12 minutes or until tender. Drain, mash with milk, sour cream and pepper. Spoon on top of sauce in baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese.

3. Bake, uncovered, 20 minutes or until hot.

MY REVIEW: Seeing as how I totally missed the whole food processor step, I am very happy with how this dish turned out. To maximize your time, start the potatoes first and then work on the sauce. I didn't peel the potatoes either and it turned out fine. I cooked this for Jason and a friend after we all got home from the gym. It was definetly a comfort food - could have been served with bread perhaps or a salad. Jason and company got into the nuts/cheese/Christmas baking before this came out of the oven however so no side dish was required.

JASONS REVIEW: Jason gives it 3 out of 5 but thinks it will be a 4 out of 5 in his lunch tomorrow as it "ages" in the fridge.

On a side note - this is what usually stares at me while I type.

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