Most comfort food dishes will include carbs and that’s an unfortunate fact. So when I manage to make one of such dishes that not only avoids the carb load but also tastes as delicious as the original recipe, that makes me super happy. I’ve posted a recipe for cauliflower mash before, now how about combining it in another dish (with a few changes) to create Shepherd’s Pie? YES!
You will need (2 portions):
200g ground beef or turkey or chicken
1 medium onion, diced
any vegetables of your choice, I only had some porcini mushrooms at the time
a dash of soy sauce
chili flakes or mixed herbs/spices of your choice for e.g cumin, curry, thyme
1 medium cauliflower
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan or other cheese of your choice such as Cheddar
100g ricotta (optional)
1 clove or garlic
Preheat your oven to 200 degrees on fan oven.
I still had some cauliflower that I had blanched 2 weeks ago, so I got about 1 medium cauliflower’s worth of florets out and used those. Remember that once mashed the volume of your veg will decrease drastically. Since the cauliflower had only been blanched I needed to cook further by boiling in water until the pieces were very soft (including the thicker stalks) and could easily be pierced with a fork. It’s easier to let this cool down before whizzing in the blender and adding the egg, ricotta, Parmesan and garlic.
Whilst the cauliflower cooks, chop up your onion and fry in some olive oil. Add your chili and herbs now and after a few minutes start adding your meat, soy sauce and other vegetables. If you have vegetables that take long to cook, you will need to allow more time before adding the meat or else chop into smaller pieces. Small pieces of everything work better in this case anyway, as you will want to take mouthfuls of your various ingredients together for a better effect. Let the meat cook through, then taste for garnish, adding salt and pepper if necessary. Take off the heat and let it cool for a few minutes.
In a 30cm rectangular dish, first lay your meat mixture then cover with a layer of cauliflower mash. Garnish with some pepper and extra cheese if your want. Insert into the oven for about 25-30 minutes until bubbling and starting to brown at the top. Let it sit for 15 minutes before cutting up into squares and serving.