October 9, 2012

Sweet Potato (Sort Of) Shepherd's Pie

It seems like forever since I have posted a recipe on the blog, and in some ways, it has been! 
Sidenote: Don't worry, I've still been cooking up a storm, and we've still been eating up a storm.  It's just that I've been cooking a lot of un-recipes...you know, roasted veggies, grains, and protein...nothing fancy.  Just a lot of easy meals that don't really warrant their own posts on the blog.

But today is the day that the recipe-drought comes to an end, and it's coming to an end with a BANG!  This recipe is the perfect way to welcome fall into your kitchen.  It's warm, high on comfort-food flavors, balanced in nutrition, and low in fat...seriously, what more could you ask for?!

Sweet Potato (Sort Of) Shepherd's Pie
Serves 4

For the Topping:
2 small sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1/4C unsweetened almond milk
1T Smart Balance
1/4tsp cinnamon
1/4tsp nutmeg
1/8tsp salt

For the Filling:
1 1/2tsp vegetable oil
1 yellow onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 green bell peppers, diced
1tsp ground thyme
2tsp dried rosemary
1 1/4C vegetable broth
1 can cannellini beans, drained, rinsed, and patted dry
salt and pepper, to taste

For Garnish:
3oz. shredded cheddar cheese

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  • Boil water in a medium pot.  Once boiling, add the diced sweet potatoes.
  • Boil for 10 minutes, or until tender.
  • Meanwhile, heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet.  Once heated, add the onion, carrots, and bell pepper, and cook for five minutes.
  • After five minutes, add the thyme, rosemary, vegetable broth, beans, salt, and pepper to the skillet.
  • Simmer for ten minutes.
  • Once the sweet potatoes are cooked, drain and place in a food processor.  Add the milk, Smart Balance, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.
  • Process until smooth.  Set aside.
  • Once the filling mixture has simmered for ten minutes, pour it into the bottom of a medium sized casserole dish.
  • Spoon the sweet potato mixture on top, and spread it out until smooth.
  • Bake for 20 minutes.
  • Remove and add the shredded cheese on top.
  • Bake for an additional 10 minutes.
  • Cool for 5-10 minutes before eating.
  • We ate our alongside a spinach salad, and it was the perfect vegetarian meal!

Bo took these pictures because I had to head over to yoga while the pie was in the oven.  They aren't the best pictures on the blog by any stretch of the imagination, but they'll have to do.  Honestly, I am just thankful that he remembered to take pictures AT ALL before devouring the shepherd's pie entirely!

(He did save me one piece...and yes, that means he ate 75% of the casserole all on his own!)

If you recreate this at home, don't be scared to play around with the filling ingredients.
For example, you could use leeks, turnips, broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, squash, etc.
You name it - and you could probably use it in the filling.  
So, get creative.
Use WHATEVER you have on hand!
It will still be equally delicious.

Question of the Day:

Do you like shepherd's pie?  If not, how about pot pie?!

Ally and Bo

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