Thursday, October 1, 2015

Veggelicious Shepherd's Pie {AIP, Paleo, Whole30}

What do you think of when you think of comfort foods? 

Now that fall is in the air (although we're still seeing 100F most days here in Dubai), my mind has turned to comfort foods. I want chili and chunky soups and stews and casseroles and all kinds of food that I can pile high in bowl and eat while curled up binge watching shows on Netflix.

To me, shepherd's pie or cottage pie are perfect examples of fall comfort foods. 


Have you ever been confused about the difference between a 'shepherd's pie' and a 'cottage pie?' Did you even know there was a difference? It seems that many people think that meat and veggies topped with mashed potatoes automatically makes it shepherd's pie. But, basically shepherd's pie is made from lamb and cottage pie is made from beef. If you want to know more about the difference between the two I suggest this post by Jamie Oliver.  

This is shepherd's pie. If you want a cottage pie then my I suggest my "Sweet Cassava Cottage Pie." Either way, they're both yummy and comforting. However, this shepherd's pie does tend to be a little lighter than many traditional versions and is packed with veggie goodness.

**This recipe is perfect for doubling and freezing one for later or sharing it with a friend.

Veggielicious Shepherd's Pie
Time: 1 hour 30 minutes (includes 50 minute baking time)
Serves: 5-6

1.5 pounds ground lamb
2 T olive oil
1 medium yellow onion - finely diced
1 T garlic powder
1.5 T dried herbs d'provence
1 t sea salt 
1/4 cup thawed frozen spinach 
1/4 cup carrot puree (1 medium carrot)
3 cups white cabbage- shredded
1 zucchini - diced

1 medium- large sweet potato - diced
3 carrots - diced
2 cups cauliflower florets (fresh or frozen)
1 T garlic powder
handful of cilantro - chopped
1/2 T olive oil
1 t sea salt

- preheat oven to 350F/180C
- peel and chop sweet potatoes and carrots for the topping and place in a pot. Fill pot with water and bring to a boil. Allow sweet potato and carrots to simmer for 10-15 minutes, then add cauliflower. Cook until all veggies are tender.
- while mash is cooking, heat olive oil in a large skillet 
- brown the meat and onion
- add garlic powder, herbs d'provence sea salt to the pan
- allow meat and onions to cook until meat is cooked through and onions are translucent.
- once meat is cooked, add cabbage and allow to cook down for a few minutes.
- then add frozen spinach (if you don't use frozen vegetables, chop and boil spinach and drain)  and  carrot puree (I buy this frozen, but you can boil & drain carrots and blend to make your own) and stir into the meat mixture.
- finally, add zucchini and allow to cook down for 3 minutes
- place meat and veggies in a casserole dish 
- Once veggies for mash topping are tender, drain and return to the hot pot. Add garlic powder, olive oil and sea salt. Mash with a potato masher (if you like lumps) or use a hand blender to make a smooth puree. Stir in chopped cilantro.
- Top the meat and veggies with mash and cover the whole top
- Bake for 45 minutes, then turn on the broiler/ grill and broil for 5 minutes

- If you plan on freezing one for later, prepare it in a casserole dish you can leave in the freezer, or use a disposable pan, or line a pan with foil, prepare and place in the freezer. Once frozen, you can pop out the whole thing, wrap with more foil and freeze. To bake you'll want to unwrap the foil, place in a casserole dish, allow to thaw in the fridge overnight and then bake.

** This recipe was shared on the Phoenix Helix AIP Roundtable