Shepherd's Pie

If it's cold outside in your neck of the woods, and your fridge and pantry are stocked with mere budget-friendly grocery staples, this is what you should make tonight for dinner. It's not fancy, or completely authentic (without the lamb), but boy, is it satisfying and easy on the budget. Double or triple the recipe, and make several pans in one afternoon. One to serve, one to freeze, and one to give to your quiet neighbor across the way. Shepherd's Pie is always greeted with warmth and welcome.

Shepherd's Pie

4 large potatoes, peeled and cubed 1 tablespoon butter 1 cup sour cream a bit of milk for consistency salt and pepper to taste 5 carrots, chopped 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 1 onion, chopped 1 pound lean ground beef 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1/4 cup ketchup 3/4 cup beef broth 5 cups frozen peas/veggies, thawed a couple squirts of worchestershire sauce dash of oregano, dash of thyme, dash garlic powder, etc. 1/4 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain and mash. Mix in butter, sour cream, and milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste; set aside.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add carrots and cook until tender but still firm, about 15 minutes. Drain, mash or puree in blender, and set aside. Preheat oven to 375F.

Heat oil in a large frying pan. Add onion and cook until translucent. Add ground beef and cook until browned.

Skim off excess fat, then stir in flour and cook 1 minute.

Add ketchup, beef broth, worchestershire sauce, and mixed veggies. Add spices. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

Spread the ground beef mixture in an even layer on the bottom of a 2 quart casserole dish.

Next, spread a layer of mashed carrots.

Top with the mashed potato mixture and sprinkle with remaining shredded cheese.

Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.