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This is a pie that is a must-have at our Christmas dinner. An easy to make and popular dish with my family and friends, the dish is always emptied half-way through dinner.

Synonymous with “SHEPHERD”, the main meat ingredient in this pie is actually meat from sheep. However, as I personally dislike the taste of mutton (whether it’s from goat or sheep), I have substituted the meat with beef instead. I’ve not tried making this with pork or chicken mince but I am sure it would turn out just as tasty. Be adventurous and make your own version. I may even try it with seafood one day 😉

SHEPHERD’S PIE
– for 2 pies

(A) Topping (to prepare ahead)
10 large potatoes
100gm melted butter
80ml milk
Salt & pepper to taste
80 gm cheddar cheese

(B) The Filling :
About 1.2kg minced beef
1 can button mushrooms, sliced
250gm pack of frozen mixed vegetables (peas, carrots & corn – to defrost before use)
3 large onions (chopped)
6 garlic cloves (minced)
1 inch knob ginger (minced)
Worcestershire sauce
Tomato Ketchup
A little sugar
Pepper
1 tablespoon dried or chopped Fresh Mint (OR rosemary & thyme) (OR mixed dried herbs)
Some cornstarch to thicken sauce

Method :

1) Skinned, cut the potatoes into large cube and put to boil until soft. Drain thoroughly & mash potatoes. Add 70gm melted butter, milk, salt & pepper (to taste) and mix well. Stir in the cheddar cheese. Set aside.

20121224_0854322) Heat pan and add some olive oil to brown the chopped onions, minced garlic & ginger. Add the minced meat and stir fry till almost cooked.  Add sliced buttons & mixed vegetables and continue to stir fry until meat is cooked. Add herbs, worcestershire sauce, tomato ketchup, sugar & pepper (to taste). Water will oozed out from the meat while cooking. (if it’s too dry, just add a little water to simmer). Add cornstarch to thickened the sauce.

20121224_081525
20121224_0820413) Put the filling into two oven-proof dishes.

20121224_0831454) Spread the mashed potatoes evenly over the filling with a fork and then tease the surface with the fork to create texture (like drawing lines). Alternatively, put it into a piping bag with a star nozzle and squeeze over the filling.   Brush the top with the remaining melted butter.
20121224_0913435) Bake in a pre-heated 200C oven for 30 mins until the top is golden brown.

6) Serve warm.

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