Shepherds Pie Recipe & Wine Pairing

Growing up in Ireland was certainly full of fond memories but one thing I never took to was corned beef and cabbage. So many Irish families like ours preferred another dish that has great flavors and warms the body on a cold Irish Day. Here’s what I will be cooking up this Saint Patrick’s Day and while a little Guinness may pass my lips prior to the meal I will be pairing this dish with a nice Syrah

Ingredients

  • 1 Onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 cloves are garlic, minced
  • 4 tablespoons of Trio’s extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 lbs of minced lamb or beef (or half turkey-half beef)
  • 1 dessertspoon of Bovril (Marmite), dissolved in hot water
  • 3 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce (this is the secret to a tasty pie — add more to taste)
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 1 teaspoon of tomato puree
  • 3 large carrots
  • Peas (optional)
  • 14 fl ounces of chicken (or blend in some Guinness)

Topping

  • 3 lbs of potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 7 fl oz of cream
  • 4 oz of butter
  • 1 egg yolk

Preparation

In a large pan gently sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil until soft but not brown. Add the meat a little at a time and cook until browned. Then add the Bovril water , Worcestershire sauce, thyme, tomato paste, carrots, stock (with some Guinness) and salt and pepper to taste. Cook on low for about 50 minutes. Pour meat mixture into a pie dish. I don’t like my sauce too runny so if there is too much liquid drain a little out before placing in pie dish. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Meanwhile, cook the potatoes in boiling water until soft but not mushy. Drain and return to the pan adding the cream, butter, egg yolk and some salt. Mash well adding seasoning to taste. Cover the meat mixture with the potato running a fork over it to smooth it out and add a bit of texture. Put the dish in the oven for five to ten minutes to crust the potato and then lower the temperature to 350 degrees for an additional 10- 15 minutes. Alternatively, prepare the pie in advance and reheat later for about 40 minutes.

Wine pairing — This dish is great with a medium bodied Syrah such as our Mesa del Sol Syrah 2007 or Pelerin Les Violettes 2009 . A great Rhone blend Le P’TiT Paysan P’TiT Pape 2011 also works fabulous.

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