We are getting closer to Winter here in Sydney and the nights and mornings are definitely darker and colder. The last thing I feel like on a winter's night is a healthy chicken salad. Slow cooker meals, soup and anything that is eaten hot are on the menu and first up, requested by Jack is Shepherd's Pie, his favourite. This is a staple over winter in our household because I can pack it with vegetables and I make it big enough to last us over two dinners (who doesn't want a night off cooking). Now the picture is certainly not pretty to look at but it tastes delicious, which is all that matters really!
Oil for frying (whatever your oil preference is)
1 Brown onion finely chopped
1 Tablespoon Garlic
2 Carrots finely chopped
3 Celery sticks finely chopped
1 Zucchini finely chopped
4 mushrooms finely chopped
1 small tin of corn kernels
(add whatever other vege you like)
1kg Mince (I use whatever is on special between lamb and beef)
2 Tablespoons Plain Flour
1 Small tin of tomato paste or 1-2 tablespoons
2 Bay Leaves
1-2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon coconut sugar or brown sugar (optional ingredient)
2-3 cups of Beef stock (you don't want to mixture swimming but enough to simmer the juice down)
Heat oil in large crockpot or saucepan adding garlic, onion, mushrooms, carrot and celery. When they are feeling soft, add mince and cook until browned.
Add zucchini, mushrooms, corn, coconut sugar and flour and stir to combine for about 2 minutes.
Add tomato paste, worcestershire, stock and bay leaves. Bring them to the boil and then reduce heat to simmer while you make potato topping. Stir every 5 minutes or occasionally to stop anything sticking on the bottom and combine flavours.
I like to use sweet potato with one white potato so it's a bit healthier and we think it tastes better too. This is optional and if you prefer normal potato mash make it as desired.
2 Large sweet potatoes peeled and chopped
1 white potato peeled and chopped
Bring to the boil until soft enough to mash
Add salt, pepper, milk and butter and mash until smooth
Stir and smooth over beef mixture and take out bay leaves.
Spread mash over beef mixture and bake in a preheated 180 degree oven for approx 10 minutes to help it set. (Grated cheese can be added on top as another option)
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