Shepherd’s Pie

                 Photo: Passover by Design

By Susie Fishbein, Passover by Design

What to do with leftover mashed potatoes, leftover chopped meat, leftover vegetables? How about the ultimate comfort food? It’s right out of my childhood: Shepherd’s Pie. If you don’t have leftover mashed potatoes, just peel some Yukon Gold, russet, or Idaho potatoes, cut into chunks, and boil. When soft, mash with some salt, pepper, and nondairy creamer. Don’t mash in a food processor or they will become gluey, but the job can be done in a Kitchen Aid stand mixer with a whisk attachment.

If the occasion calls for a more formal presentation, divide the filling among individual ramekins before piping with potatoes and baking. To make the potatoes easier to pipe, add a little more creamer.


3 tablespoons olive oil
1  1/2  onions, cut into 1⁄4-inch dice
16  baby carrots, sliced, or 2 regular carrots cut into 1⁄4-inch slices
2 stalks celery, sliced into 1⁄4-inch pieces
4 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes
2 pounds ground beef (can use 1⁄2 ground turkey and 1⁄2 ground beef)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon beef or chicken consommé powder
Leftover mashed potatoes or fresh mashed potatoes from 2 large Idaho potatoes mashed with 1 tablespoon margarine, salt, and 1 tablespoon nondairy creamer


Preheat oven to 425˚F.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery. Sauté 3–4 minutes. Add the garlic. Add the salt and pepper. Add the leaves from the sprig of thyme and the bay leaf.

Lift the tomatoes out of their liquid and drain well. Chop and add to the pan. Add the ground beef and sauté until brown, about 12–15 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and discard it.

Add the sugar and consommé powder.

Place the meat mixture into a medium ovenproof casserole dish. Cover with mashed potatoes. For a decorative touch, you can pipe the mashed potatoes through a large star tip of a pastry bag.

Place in oven and bake for 20–30 minutes, until potatoes are just starting to brown.


Yield: Makes 6-8 servings

Recipes: Passover, Meat, Beef, Non-Gebrokts, Kosher