Dark Days: Shepherd’s Pie

March 22, 2010(updated on October 3, 2018)

cast iron shepherd's pie

Scott and I spent large hunks of today outside, rejoicing in the 70 degree day and fragrant springtime air. Around noon, our friends Thad and Angie (just days away from their first encounter with parenthood) picked us up and we headed down to the Italian Market for lunch at Paesano’s and an Italian Market wander. Later in the afternoon, the two of us struck out again, to stroll through along the Schuylkill River and zigzag our way back home through the lovely neighborhoods around our apartment.

And what did I make for dinner when we returned from the warmth and sunshine? Well, a hearty shepherd’s pie! I realize that it seems deeply counter-intuitive to tuck into something so deeply winter-y after such a glorious day, but the sad fact is that we’ve only had this wonderful weather for about five days (and it’s supposed to rain tomorrow), so the local farmers markets haven’t had a chance to catch up with the newly temperate climate. Sadly, it’s going to take a few more weeks of balmy days before those springtime items begin to appear in our markets.

Nonetheless, the shepherd’s pie was delicious. I sauteed together a chopped storage onion (Winter Harvest), diced carrots and parsnips, kale and cabbage (all farmers market). I admit to deglazing with non-local wine. After it had cooked down, I added a pound of grass-fed beef (Meadow Run Farms), a couple of teaspoons of flour and a bit of water, to help create a gravy.

While that was all cooking, I peeled and boiled the last of a bag of yukon gold potatoes (Winter Harvest) and mashed them with a bit of milk, butter (Winter Harvest), salt and pepper.

I had cooked the meat/veg combo in an oven-safe cast iron skillet, so when it was all cooked, the potatoes were smoothed over top and broiled until golden brown. Delicious, full of vegetables and enough for at least three more dinnertime servings. That’s my kind of cooking!

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11 thoughts on "Dark Days: Shepherd’s Pie"

  • This looks so good! Shepherd’s pie never seems counterintuitive to me–slice a tomato on the side and I’d probably eat it happily in the dead heat of August.

  • I know, I still have to cook wintry too! I think I did a good job of straddling the line with Sunday dinner (on my blog), a cabbage salad on rice.
    I also wanted to say that I make my shepherd’s pie in my cast iron skill too and then just bung it in the oven – so handy!

  • As long as it’s not too hot to turn on the oven, I’m totally up for shepherd’s pie. And making everything up all in one pan is never a bad idea. Gotta love a good piece of cast iron!

  • Shepherds pie always fits the bill for me, especially with a healthy recipe like this one, plus the added bonus of less washing up by using the cast iron skillet, brilliant!

  • this picture inspired our dinner last night. Everyone loved it and it was delicious. THanks for the inspiration!

  • I love Shepherd’s Pie anytime, and when I find it on a menu I am likely to order it. Yours looks scrumptious.

  • I love your blog and just wanted to add that a great change up for Shepherds Pie is to use Chicken Apple sausage instead of beef and mashed sweet potatoes instead of Yukon Golds. It is so good! Yours looks wonderful!