Sean Heather’s Shepherd’s Pie
5lbs Ground Beef
5 Liter Beef Stock
1 Large White Onion
2 Cups Fresh Peas
2 tbsp Ground Fennel
3 tbsp Ground Mustard
1 tsp Cumin
2 tbsp Sage (Fresh or Dried)
Salt and Pepper to taste
¼ cups Garlic Confit
Ingredients for Garlic Confit:
2 cups raw, peeled garlic
Vegetable Oil, enough to cover garlic, depends on size of pot
Ingredients for Mashed Potatoes:
5lbs Red Skin Potatoes
Enough water to cover
Large handful of salt for the water pot
4 Cloves of Garlic
½ lb of Butter
2 cups of Cream (35%)
Salt and pepper to taste
To prepare the garlic confit place as much or as little garlic you would like in a small pot.
Fill the pot with vegetable oil until the garlic is just covered. On the lowest possible heat setting, cook the garlic until its nice and golden brown.
Strain the garlic out, reserve the oil for the next batch.
Puree the garlic until it’s a smooth paste!
The garlic is good on almost anything, even spread on toast.
For the Shepherd’s Pie:
Dice the onion and garlic into a small to medium dice (about ¼” square).
In a small pot, filled with salted water, lightly blanch the carrots until they are about 1/3 of the way cooked. (Soft on the outside, but raw on the inside).
In a large sauté pan, begin to sweat the onion on medium-low heat.
Once the onions are translucent, add the ground beef and increase the heat to medium.
As the beef is cooking be sure to break up any large chunks that form by pressing them with the back of a wooden spoon.
Once the beef is about 90% way cooked, add the carrots to the mix, stir for another 5 minutes.
After the 5 minutes add the beef stock, all herbs, spices and garlic confit. Cook for a further 5 minutes to remove any of the grittiness potentially found in dried herbs and spices.
At the very end, add the peas. This will help them from discoloring and becoming mushy.
Season with salt and pepper, taste and adjust seasoning if needed.
Place the beef mixture in a oven safe dish and cool in the fridge.
For the Mashed Potatoes:
Peel all the potatoes and garlic.
Cut the potatoes into even pieces.
Place them in a large pot and cover with water until the water is just higher than the potatoes.
Throw in the cloves of garlic and the large handful of salt.
Boil the potatoes until they are soft but not falling apart. You should be able to push a knife through them with no force and the potato should then slide back off with no help.
In a separate pot heat the butter and the milk together.
Once the potatoes are strained add the warmed butter and milk and mash them until smooth. If you have access to a potato mill this works best, if not a household masher works fine. Ensure the potatoes are as lump free as possible.
Season with salt and pepper; adjust the seasoning if necessary.
Preheat the oven to 375°F
Remove the shepherd’s pie mix from the fridge
Either, using a piping bag, pipe the potatoes over the beef or using a rubber spatula spread them across it evenly.
Bake the Shepherd’s Pie in the oven for approximately 45 minutes or until nice and hot on the inside and the potatoes have started to brown.