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St. Patrick's Day calls for Shepherd's Pie
By Dave Cathey
| Published: March 13, 2013
St. Patrick's Day is Sunday, which many will celebrate at various pubs and eateries around the city. (I'll have plenty about that in Thursday's Mood section and online at mood.newsok.com.)
But if you don't want to be part of an all-day black-and-tan fest centered around an ever-worsening rendition of “Danny Boy,” you might want to put on your green apron and make something at home.
Corned beef is a common favorite, perhaps some Colcannon. But this year, I opted for Shepherd's Pie.
Also known as Cottage Pie, to denote its humble origins, this dish topped with mashed potatoes is traditionally served in Ireland with ground lamb seasoned with fresh herbs and ground spices. But if lamb is just more authentic than you can handle, go with ground beef. If you want to make it Oklahoma-centric, consider ground bison.
This is a kid-friendly meal that is simple, inexpensive and can be made, at least in part, in advance. Also, it makes great leftovers. Serve this crowd-pleaser with some nice local greens wilted in a little water or oil and wash it down with Guinness — green tea for the kids. Please, no quality beer damaged by green dye.
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For the potatoes:
2 pounds russet potatoes
½ cup cream, half-and-half or whole milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 ½ teaspoons salt, preferably kosher
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
2 egg yolks
For the filling:
2 pounds ground lamb, beef or bison
1 ½ cup beef or chicken broth
1 onion, finely chopped
2/3 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
2/3 cup fresh or frozen English peas
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, peeled and diced small
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons bacon grease or vegetable oil
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves, minced
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoon thyme leaves, minced
Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste