A classic shepherd’s pie is always a great dinner choice. It’s easy, economical and delicious, but then again, so is our revamped shepherd’s pie, which seamlessly blends tradition with spicy Southwest flavours to create a tasty new twist on the original dish.
Tex-Mex shepherd’s pie
- 3 or 4 medium potatoes, peeled, quartered or cubed
- 1/4 cup milk
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 500 grams extra-lean ground beef
- 1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
- 1/3 cup diced red pepper
- 3 garlic cloves, finely minced
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 4 green onions, finely sliced
- 2 tablespoons pickled jalapenos or green chilies, finely chopped
- 2/3 cup corn
- 1-3/4 cups chunky salsa
- 1 to 2 cups grated cheddar, Tex-Mex or Mexican shredded cheese blend
- Vegetable oil
- Chopped cilantro
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Bring a pot of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the potatoes, and cook until tender.
- Remove from heat, and drain the water from the pot. Add the milk and butter to the potatoes, and then mash the mixture until smooth and creamy.
- Stir in 1 cup of grated cheese, and set aside.
- While the potatoes are cooking, add 1 tablespoon of oil and the ground beef to a large frying pan. Sauté over medium heat until the meat has browned and is fully cooked through, approximately 6 minutes. Stir often, and break up the meat with a spatula or spoon. Mix in the cumin, chili powder, smoked paprika, salt and pepper.
- In a separate pan, add water or 1 tablespoon of oil, and sauté the red pepper, celery and garlic over medium heat until tender.
- Add the sautéed vegetables, green onions, jalapenos, corn and salsa to the ground beef.
- Pour the ground beef mixture into a medium-size casserole or baking dish. Spread the cheesy mashed potatoes evenly on top.
- Sprinkle with a pinch of smoked paprika, and bake for 35 minutes.
- Remove the dish from the oven. Turn up the heat to 500 degrees F or to broil. Add a light layer of grated cheese to the dish, and return the pie to the oven for a few minutes or until the cheese is melted and has just started to brown. Be sure to watch it carefully to prevent burning.
- Serve with a garnish of chopped cilantro.
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Depending on the size of the potatoes, this recipe should yield about 2 cups mashed before adding the cheese. While this dish has a nice balance of meat to potatoes, feel free to modify the ratio if you’re using leftovers or other pre-made mashed potatoes.