Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Shepard's Pie and Corn Bread

So when I told my boyfriend I was making vegan Shepard's Pie for dinner last night he laughed and shuddered. We both remember the dreaded Shepard's Pie dish as the stereotypical lower middle class cheap meal; our moms would layer cheap ground beef, peas, and other assorted frozen veggies and top it all off with a heaping helping of mashed potatoes. It was bland, but warm on a cold winter's night. I never complained (can't speak for my boyfriend, though).

I was paging through Vegan on the Cheap and found this recipe for Smoky Southwestern Sweet Potato Shepard's Pie and was intrigued. The ingredients included carrots, onion, black beans, sweet potatoes, and corn. Things we like, yes? So I went for it! Here's the recipe for you - enjoy!

Smoky Southwestern Sweet Potato Shepard's Pie, adapted from Vegan on the Cheap
2 chilies in adobo
2 Tbsp water
3 sweet potatoes or yams, skinned, and cubed
2 Tbsp Earth Balance or other margarine
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
2 cans black beans
1 1/2 cups mild/spicy salsa
1 1/2 cups frozen or fresh corn (defrosted if frozen)
1 tsp cumin
Salt & Pepper

Set oven to 350 and grease a 9x13 inch pan. Set aside. Steam the sweet potatoes for about 12-15 minutes until they are soft enough to mash. In a blender, blend the water and chilies until smooth; set aside.

In a large skillet, cook onion and carrots in olive oil, covered, until softened, about 10 minutes. In the mean time, mash the sweet potatoes and add Earth Balance, salt & pepper, and half of the chilies mix. Mix well.

Put the onion/carrot mixture into the prepared pan with the beans, salsa, corn, cumin, the rest of the chile mixture, salt and pepper. Mix well and then spread the mashed sweet potatoes on top in an even layer. Bake for 40 minutes.

Someday I'll get a better camera :P

We served this with a small spinach salad and vegan corn bread from my new book, The Joy of Vegan Baking (thank you Amanda & Erin!). The Shepard's Pie takes a long time to prepare so I wouldn't make it on a hectic night but it was well worth the wait and was certainly a fresh twist on an old, tired out dish.

We've only been vegan since January 1st, so almost two months now, and I have already lost about 9 pounds without really making a strong effort. I've started feeling healthier and have thoroughly enjoyed researching and learning about what I'm putting into my body and what it will do there. I'm actually glad that cheese is beginning to repulse me, since I was craving it everyday in the very beginning. The more research I do on milk/dairy products and the industry, the more disgusted I get....more on that later!

1 comment:

  1. try this recipe for "Paradise Casserole" from The Candle Cafe in NYC (http://www.whatsforlunchnyc.com/recipes/paradisecasserole.pdf)....it's similar to the sweet potato Shepard's Pie you made, and I won an award for it at a Vegan Thanksgiving event :-)....I always omit the kombu and sub amaranth for the millet