Shepherd's Pie Italian Style

I feel good. I am surfing on a big feel good wave because I mowed the lawn yesterday and because it was such a feat, I think I will live on it for the rest of the week. Or until it has to be done again. The sudden explosion of Spring here has turned all growing things into something out of a sci-fi scenario, the speed of growth is pretty scary and in a few days the lawn turned into a rainforest and I did contemplate using a machete at one point (you can see it in the background in the flower photo, n.b. that that was in its early stages and not the worst part of it) but went for the more traditional lawnmower that coughed and hiccuped its way through the jungle. But it does look like a real lawn now, I have to pop out and look at it now and then just to relish in having one.

Shepherd's Pie Italian Style

This pre-Easter – Passover week (include all the other holidays that I am ignorant of in my western civilization/Christianity blindness) I will post more recipes because I thought that maybe you are like me, often on the lookout for some nice food to include on the holiday menu. Today we have an Italian style Shepherd’s Pie that looks a bit more festive if you serve it in smaller or single portions like her and considering that Easter is early this year, we can need a bit of comfort food when the weather changes from sun and warmth to icy winds. And this is such a comforting dish that I would be happy to eat far more often than I do.

Shepherd's Pie Italian Style

4-6 servings

400 g/ 14 oz minced meat, beef or lamb
1 carrot, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 stick celery, chopped
200 g/ 7 oz cooked spinach

4 tblsp extra-virgin olive oil
2-3 tblsp flour
400 ml/ 1,7 cup stock
100 ml/ 0,42 cup tomato sauce

400-500 g/ 14-17,6 oz potatoes
chopped fresh herbs
4-5 tbslp parmesan cheese, freshly grated

– Peel and boil the potatoes, if you want a thicker layer of mashed potatoes on top, just cook more of them.
– While the potatoes boil, start frying the vegetables gently in a pan or skillet. When they are soft, add the minced meat and fry gently until completely cooked. Add salt.
– Mix olive oil and flour and then fry it in a pan for 2 minutes then add stock and let it simmer until it has thickened.
– Add the sauce to the meat and stir well.
– Mash the potatoes, add the herbs and the parmesan. I usually add a bit of water or milk to make it less stodgy.
– Grease an oven-proof form and make a layer of all the meat, then put a layer of cooked spinach on top and finish with a layer of potatoes.
– Bake in a pre-heated oven (200°C/390°F) or about 30 minutes or until golden.

Shepherd's Pie Italian Style

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