I can’t take credit for one little bit of this incredible recipe, because it was 100% prepared by the wonderful Brian. Shepherd’s pie has always been one of my favorite meals, and I’m pretty picky about it. I grew up with my mother’s delicious recipe, and one of my first jobs was at an Irish Pub in Florida (Four Green Fields) where I really fell in love with the perfect combination of flavors. I would take breaks from my bar tending to listen to live Celtic music and scarf down hearty spoonfuls of their perfect pie.
Brian shares my passion for healthy food that doesn’t lack on taste. His recipe feels like home, and still gives you that comfort food without the heaviness. I promise you, this is one of those vegan meals that will rock your world and make you realize that healthy eating isn’t so bad! He is such an amazing cook, and everything his hands prepare are filled with passion and love, which you’ll see so clearly in his thorough instructions.
Brian’s vegan shepherd’s pie is perfect for fall, and we even listened to Irish music on Pandora while eating (I think the music is a must).
2lbs of red potatoes
2 large carrots
1 1/5 lbs of vegan ground meat (we used trader Joe’s meatless balls)
1 tablespoon of vegan butter
Almond or soy milk
One large onion
2 large cloves of garlic
-Quarter the potatoes. You can opt to peel them or keep the skin on. I like to keep the skin on for nutritional purposes plus it adds color.
-Chop the carrots into chunks.
-Place the potatoes and carrots into cold water and place on high heat. Boil until both are soft enough to mash, roughly 17 minutes.
(Note: it’s important to use cold water at first, as it preserve the integrity of the starches in the potatoes before they boil.)
-While potatoes and carrots are boiling, fully chop the onion and garlic.
-Coat the bottom of a skillet with olive oil and sweat the inions over low to medium heat. Add garlic and vegan meat. Sauté until cooked and meat is slightly browned.
-Turn of the skillet and add a generous tablespoon of sage, a teaspoon of red pepper and salt and pepper to taste.
-Drain the potatoes and carrots. Add a water cup of soy milk and a tablespoon of vegan butter. Add salt and pepper to taste.
-With beaters or a fork, mash the ingredients together. Personally I prefer to leave chunks of potatoes and carrots in there for presentation, but how much you blend is entirely your call.
Now comes the fun part.
-In smaller single serving ramekins or a large single casserole dish, generously line the bottom of the pan with the meat and onion base. Spread evenly and pack lightly to form the bottom of the dish. Next, spread the potatoes on top, the quantity of which is entirely up to you based on preference.
-Bake in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes to allow extra moisture to escape and flavor to mesh. Remove and serve straight from the dish. Garnish with dried sage or your favorite vegan gravy!