Category: Casseroles


Depending upon where you happen to find yourself in the world, the cold weather is upon us- or will be soon. Now is the time to get your arsenal ready- to have your comfort food ducks in a row. And if you have someone in your household that works outside for a living- even in the bitter cold of winter- like I do, then it’s vitally important to have a strong repertoire of hot, filling foods. This dish definitely fits the bill! It even makes fantastic leftovers and can be packed into a hot food jar (thermos) and taken for lunch or dinner. Oh- and as an added bonus, this will make your house smell amazing! Bake it on the same day as you do a maple apple pie (keep an eye out for the recipe) and you could sell tickets for people to come and smell your living room ¬†ūüôā

The ingredients for this casserole are pretty straightforward. If you don’t have any tomato paste on hand you can use ketchup, but don’t skip it completely. I used to because I couldn’t fathom using tomato anything in gravy. I was sorely mistaken! Even the small amount that’s called for in this recipe adds a layer of flavor and richness that will be lacking if you leave it out. There will be a flat note in an otherwise beautiful composition. And it doesn’t taste of tomato at all, so don’t worry about that.

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Start by preheating your oven to 425 degrees so it’s waiting for you. Then get out a skillet or frying pan that is big enough for all of your filling ingredients plus the 4 cups of gravy. So you need a BIG one. Heat the olive oil or bacon fat (adds a touch of smokiness that is awesome!) over medium high heat. Put the chicken in the pan and cook until it’s no longer pink. Add in the ham and carrots and cook them all together until the chicken browns, about 5 minutes.

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Transfer those to a bowl and set aside, then lower the heat to medium. In the same pan, melt the butter and cook the onions until they’re soft. Add in the garlic and tomato paste and cook for another 2 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and stir to incorporate. Congratulations, you’ve just made a roux! Let the roux cook for about 3 minutes, stirring often, to get rid of the raw flour taste.¬†Break out your whisk and add the chicken broth and milk to the roux. Whisk while you’re adding the liquids so you don’t end up with huge lumps of roux. Once all of the liquid is in the pan, whisk until there are no lumps except onions and garlic.

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Now you can add the meats and carrots back into the pan. Add the Worcestershire sauce, parsley, and peas and bring to a boil. Taste the filling to check for seasoning. Add salt and white pepper to taste. You CAN use black pepper, but I prefer the flavor of white pepper and it eliminates having black specks in a light colored sauce.

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Once you have the filling seasoned to your liking, start on the topping. I usually get the dry ingredients put together while the chicken is cooking. If you didn’t, that’s fine too- just do it now. The filling can sit for a little while. Once you have your dry ingredients mixed (including the Parmesan cheese), grate your butter into them. I just stick the box grater at an angle in the bowl to save on dishes.

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See how nice and small those pieces of butter are? They make it SO MUCH easier to incorporate into the flour! I do this just about every time I have to incorporate cold butter into flour. You could cube the butter and work it in, but why??

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So evenly (and easily) mixed! Yay! Add the milk and stir to make a sticky biscuit dough. This isn’t the type of biscuit dough that you can roll out and have pretty biscuits for sandwiches. This will form a craggy topping of biscuits (looking not unlike the topping of apple crumble dessert, hence the name) that are perfect for eating with stew.

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**There’s a lesson here, boys & girls: if you need to add more liquid to biscuit dough, DO NOT start pouring from the jug, lest the dog bump into you and you add more than you were planning on. Sigh… the dough should be less wet than this; it should look almost like a slightly dry cookie dough at the wettest.**

Spread the chicken filling evenly into a 13 x 9 baking dish and drop the biscuit dough in gobs of about 2 tablespoons (I’m totally guessing!) all over the top. I usually get about 12 gobs (technical term) out of this batch of dough.

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Bake this in your preheated oven, uncovered, for about half an hour. You want the filling to boil for about 10 minutes and the topping to be nice and browned. If your topping gets too brown before the filling boils, turn your oven down to 400 degrees and cover the dish with foil. You may also want to get your oven calibrated, or at least get an oven thermometer so you can make sure it’s at the right temperature. Once the filling boils you can take the foil off and finish the dish. Just don’t let the topping burn.

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**Had my biscuit dough not been too wet, this would look MUCH closer to an actual crumble top. It still tasted wonderful, it just looked differently than it was supposed to. So be careful when adding extra liquids to mixtures!**

This recipe originally came from another blog site, and it was pretty good. But it was overly complicated and the result wasn’t, personally speaking, worth the effort. It also had a few ingredients that we don’t really care for, so I started playing and this is what the dish morphed into.¬†I hope this helps inspire you to start planning for the cold weather to come ūüôā

The Recipe:

For the Filling:

About 2 T Bacon Fat or Oil- enough to cook the chicken and onions

1 1/2 Lbs. Chicken, diced (white or dark meat, either is fine)

8 Oz. Ham, chopped (just about any thicker sliced ham will work- just don’t use shaved)

1 Medium Onion, diced fine

4-6 Cloves Garlic, minced

4 Medium Carrots, diced small

6 T Butter

1 t Tomato Paste

1/2 C Flour

3 C Chicken Broth

1 C Milk

1 1/2 T Dried Parsley

3 Splashes Worcestershire Sauce (about 1 1/2 teaspoons)

1 C Peas (fresh, frozen, or canned and drained well)

Salt & Pepper to taste

 

For the Topping:

2 C Flour

2 t Baking Soda

3/4 t Salt

1/2 t White Pepper

6 T Butter, frozen and grated

1/2 C Parmesan, grated (fresh is best, but canned works too)

1 C Milk

 

The Method:

*Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F.

*In a large skillet, heat the bacon fat or oil over medium high heat and brown the chicken, adding the ham and carrots about halfway through.

*While the chicken is cooking, combine the dry topping ingredients, including the cheese.

*Grate the butter either directly into the bowl or onto a chilled plate (if using a box grater; a chilled bowl will work for using a flat grater).

*Gently mix the butter into the dry ingredients. Set aside in the fridge.

*Once the chicken is brown, transfer the mixture to a large bowl and set aside.

*In the same pan, lower the temperature to medium and melt 6 T butter in the same pan.

*Cook the onions until they’re soft, about 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and tomato paste and cook for another 2 minutes.

*Sprinkle the flour over the mixture and stir well. Cook the roux, stirring every minute or so, for about 3 minutes to get rid of the raw flour taste.

*Whisk in the chicken broth until no lumps remain, then add the milk. Whisk together to ensure there are no lumps.

*Add in the Parsley, Worcestershire sauce, peas, and the chicken & veggie mixture. Bring to a full boil, stirring occasionally.

*Turn off the heat and check for seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste.

*Retrieve the bowl of biscuit ingredients from the fridge and pour the milk over the mixture, stirring gently until incorporated. Get the biscuits well mixed, but don’t over work the dough or the topping will be tough.

*Coat a 13 x 9 baking dish lightly with butter or spray with cooking spray and then pour the filling into it.

*Drop the biscuit mixture evenly over the filling in 2 T gobs until you’ve used it all.

*Bake, uncovered, for about 30 minutes or until the filling is bubbly and the biscuits are a deep golden brown. If the biscuits brown too quickly and the filling isn’t boiling yet, cover the pan with foil or an inverted baking sheet and lower the oven temperature to 400 degrees.

 

 

 

I think most of us know that every region of America has it’s own “signature” dish. Texas has barbecue, New England has clam chowder, California has Mexican in the South and wine country in the north, and the Mid West has fried foods and roasted corn. But how many of you know about the “signature” dishes of the far Northern part of our country? Before I moved to South Dakota I had no clue at all. But I learned quick! South Dakota has chislic: small bites of marinated beef, lamb, or venison, grilled or fried and served with toothpicks and hot sauce to dash on each piece. It was on EVERY menu that didn’t belong to a national chain restaurant and everyone thought theirs was the best, naturally. Minnesota, being heavily Scandinavian, is big on lutefisk (pickled white fish) and other northern European treats. And, of course, Wisconsin has it’s cheese; specifically, fried cheddar cheese curds. ¬†But there’s also a wider ranging dish that is ubiquitous throughout the eastern Dakotas, northern Minnesota, and northern Wisconsin: Hot Dish. Much like any other regional dish you’ll find, every person who makes it has their own rendition of it, all are a favorite of someone, and everyone thinks theirs is the best. The ingredients have surprising variation; some people use ground meat, some use cubed. Some use mashed potatoes on top, many use tater tots, and some even use white or wild rice in their hot dish and forgo the potatoes all together. But they are all known as hot dish because they all consist of meat in some sort of sauce, possibly with veggies mixed in, with some manner of starch, and without fail the dish is in casserole form. It shows up at every single pot luck function in at least one iteration because it’s expected to; it’s not a pot luck if there isn’t hot dish.

Being short on time and ingredients one afternoon, I set out to make my own version. I got the basics together and just started adding things as the ideas came to me. I do that a lot. We were pleasantly surprised with the results and it’s a regular feature in the cold weather menu rotation. Thankfully, I was able to remember what I put in the pan!

The ingredients are very basic and very inexpensive. If you can find a really good deal on ground beef or turkey, it’s even cheaper to make, so it’s also a really good broke food dish ūüôā

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Yes; that’s canned cream of mushroom soup. This is a super easy dish that is very budget friendly. If you want to make condensed cream of mushroom from scratch, it will work really well in this recipe and the taste will be phenomenal. But for now, canned is fine.

So brown your ground beef, drain it well, and put it back into the pan you used to cook it. Add the white pepper, onion & garlic powders, the soy & Worcestershire sauces, then the soup. Stir everything together and see what you’ve got. It will be super thick, so we want to thin it out a bit. How much varies; add milk or water until the mixture is the consistency of a stew. I usually end up adding about 1/3 cup of milk but sometimes it’s a little more. Once you have the right consistency, heat the mixture to a boil and then transfer it to an 8×8 baking dish. Since I have all stainless steel cookware (which means it’s oven safe) I just spread the mixture evenly in the same pan. Now you can spread the tater tots over the top of the beef mixture. I prefer to use mini tater tots, but use whatever you like or can find.

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Ready for the oven! Put the dish or pan in the oven, uncovered, at 400 degrees until the tater tots are golden brown and crispy on top. Usually that takes about 30 minutes in my oven.

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See how the sauce bubbled up between the tots? That’s how you know it’s cooking properly. If your tots are brown and crispy but the sauce isn’t bubbling, the dish is cooking too fast. Cover it with foil, cook until bubbly, then you can take the foil off and crisp up the tater tots.

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Hearty, tasty goodness that comes together fast! The whole thing is done in about 45 minutes and most of that is baking time. My favorite way to eat this is…

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…with ketchup. This is basically a burger & fries casserole, minus the cheese soup that usually goes into it, so ketchup goes perfectly with it. The rest of the family prefers theirs with BBQ sauce on top; the smoky, sweet flavor it adds is great! Add a salad or some fruit to this and you’ve got a complete meal. Make a double batch and you’ve got an easy offering for the potluck table ūüôā

The Recipe:

1 Lb Ground Beef, Turkey, or Chicken

1 t Onion Powder

1 t Garlic Powder

1/4 t Pepper (I use white for just about everything, but black will work fine too)

1 T Soy Sauce

1 T Worcestershire Sauce

1 Can Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup

1/3 (+/-) Milk or Water

Half of a 28 Oz Bag Frozen Tater Tots, or however many it takes to to completely cover the top of the meat mixture (I use mini Tots, but use what you like or can find)

 

The Method:

*Heat the oven to 400 degrees.

*In a medium skillet or high sided oven safe pan, brown the ground meat then drain it well.

*Put the meat back into the pan and add the rest of the ingredients EXCEPT the milk and the tater tots.

*Mix very well and add milk or water until a stew-like consistency is reached.

*Heat the mixture to boiling then transfer it to an 8×8 baking dish (unless you are using an oven safe pan or skillet- then you can leave it where it is).

*Layer the tater tots over the mixture evenly, making sure there are no large gaps.

*Bake the casserole for about 30 minutes, or until the sauce is bubbly and the tater tots are golden brown and crispy.

*Serve with condiments you would eat on a hamburger, or it’s also quite good plain.

 

So after being informed by my BFF that the print feature I added awhile back actually prints the entire blog post instead of only the recipe like I wanted it to, I have (with a little help from a more experienced blogger) figured out how to make only the recipe in each post printable. Yay! So from now on you will be able to print only the best part of each post: the recipe! And when I get time here and there I will go back and add the feature to all of my other posts (which number 72 as of today, so it may take me a little while to get it done). Thank you all for sticking with me thus far! ‚̧

I’ve had some requests for a “print recipe” feature, so I looked around and found one of those! You can now find a new button on each post. It’s labeled “print and PDF” and it can be found at the very bottom of each post along with the sharing buttons. You’re welcome and thanks for your continued support! ‚̧

I haven’t been blogging much lately. Too much life getting in the way. Too many things that just haven’t gone right. Too many things that have just been… complicated. I wish sometimes that things could just be easy. Easy to get done. Easy to go through. Easy to figure out. But that’s not how life is, in general. And when things get difficult and complicated even The Humble Food Snob tries to find things that are as UNcomplicated as possible. Sometimes that even means throwing together a dish that is made up of simple, premade products that maybe aren’t the greatest for you, but provide a measure of comfort that at least partly makes up for some of the dubious ingredients. Sometimes you just need that. One example is my taco bake. Another is this casserole. I found it on a now-defunct blog and played with the recipe until it came out just right. My daughters were reluctant to try it, since it’s not exactly beautiful food, but once they did they loved it! They even like to take it to school for lunch. And now that winter has come to South Dakota I’m looking for hot foods to send with them for lunch. They have recess before lunch (which I think makes more sense than sending kids out to run around on a full stomach) so they need something to warm them up for lunch. This casserole is just the ticket! And it’s easy enough to just throw together; even when life is being frustratingly difficult.

For the chicken filling I like to use roasted chicken. You COULD use store bought rotisserie chicken, but the price you pay for those is just disturbing. In my area they are up to $8-$10 now for a bird that is barely big enough to feed 2 people. Instead, I recommend using rotisserie roasted chicken you made yourself. I shared the recipe last week and it’s perfect for this recipe. So gather your ingredients…

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The yellow stuff in the cup is canned nacho cheese sauce. I haven’t found a recipe I like for homemade yet, so I use canned. You can also use the salsa con queso that’s found in the chip aisle. All you need is about a quarter cup. You can leave it out, but I like the flavor and moisture it adds to the filling.

So chop the chicken, mix in the cheese sauce if you’re using it, and add half a cup of the shredded cheese.

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Once you have that mixture put together, set it aside and mix the cream of mushroom soup, milk, onion powder, salt, and pepper in a small sauce pan and heat to a boil. Turn the heat to low and mix in one cup of the cheese (you should have about half a cup leftover now). Leave the pan on the lowest heat you can manage on your stove and get your crescent rolls ready. Open the can and unroll the crescents. Put a roll on your work surface and flatten very gently to give yourself a little more to work with. Take about a tablespoon of filling and put it on the wide part of the roll:

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Don’t put too much filling on; if you do, not only will you not have enough to fill all of the crescents, but the rolls will open during cooking and all you’ll have is a mess. Now take the bottom corners and fold them in, like so:

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Fold the bottom up to the top and you will have a very neat little parcel of tastiness:

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Spray a 13×9 baking dish with oil or cooking spray and spread a scant half cup of your sauce into the bottom. As you make your parcels, line them up in the pan so they look like this:

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Next, pour the remaining sauce all over the parcels and then sprinkle the remaining cheese over the whole thing.

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Cover this with foil that you’ve sprayed with oil or cooking spray (it’s the easiest way to make sure that what you’re baking doesn’t stick to the foil) and put in your preheated oven. Bake for about half an hour, then remove the foil and return the pan to the oven. Bake another 10-15 minutes or until the rolls are cooked and the sauce is bubbly.

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That looks SO good! I wish I was eating it right now, but even the leftovers are long gone. The girls took them for their school lunch. It’s the perfect meal for when you need good food that’s easy to make! Add a salad or crunchy baby carrots- or even some canned mandarin oranges and you’ve got a simple meal that’s very tasty and satisfying. And, best of all, it’s just plain EASY!

The Recipe:

2 C Chicken, cooked and shredded or finely chopped

1 C Cheese, shredded (most bags of pre-shredded cheese are about 2 cups- just check the package)

1/4 C Nacho Cheese Sauce or Salsa Con Queso

1 Can Cream of Mushroom Soup

1 C Milk

1 t Onion Powder

1/2 t White Pepper

1/4-1/2 t Salt (if you’re using seasoned chicken, use the lesser amount)

2 Tubes Refrigerated Crescent Rolls

The Method:

*Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

*Grease a 13×9 baking dish.

*In a small sauce pan, combine the soup, milk, onion powder, salt, and pepper.

*Bring to a boil over medium heat, then turn the heat to as low as you can get it.

*Add in one cup of the cheese and stir to melt.

*Spread a scant half cup of sauce on the bottom of the baking dish.

*Leave the rest of the sauce on very low heat.

*Combine the chicken, cheese sauce, and 1/2 cup of the cheese.

*Open and separate the crescent rolls. You can put out as many as you have room for on your clean work surface.

*Press the rolls gently to flatten slightly. Don’t mash them.

*Place about 1 tablespoon on the bottom of the wide part of the crescent.

*Fold the two bottom corners up and over the filling.

*Roll the crescent up, from bottom to top, as shown above.

*Continue with the rest of the rolls and filling, lining the parcels up in the pan as you go.

*Once done, cover the parcels with the rest of the sauce, top with the remaining cheese, and cover the dish with aluminum foil that you’ve sprayed with cooking spray (so the cheese doesn’t stick to it).

*Bake for about half an hour, remove the foil, and return to the oven for 10-15 minutes; until the rolls are cooked through and the sauce is bubbly.

*Remove from the oven and let sit 5-10 minutes to cool to a temperature that won’t sear your mouth ūüėČ

*Note* If you look at the date of this post and read the post itself you may be confused. I posted this around the holidays (the post’s original date was 12-14-11) and have moved it here from Blogger. Hence the discrepancy. Sorry for any confusion*
One of my favorite things to do while grocery shopping has always been to walk the aisles looking for prepackaged foods I can make better myself. In fact my husband makes a point of looking for prepackaged foods that look really good in the picture and letting me know so I can recreate them for him with results that will NEVER come out of the box at the store. This paid off big time about 10 years ago in the form of my Taco Bake. I walked into the “ethnic” section and found, advertised in an obnoxious box, a Taco Bell meal kit for a kind of taco casserole. I thought “I cannot believe anyone would pay that much for this crap. I can do that WAY better and much cheaper”. As it turns out I say that at least 2 or 3 times every time I walk into a grocery store. However, I digress. This is one of the easiest dishes I have ever made in the 17 years I’ve been cooking. It’s almost as easy as making a PB&J sandwich so anyone can do it- seriously. That being the case I realized this morning while I was putting it together for Ron to put in the oven this afternoon while I’m gone that this is a great recipe for the holiday season. No- not for the Thanksgiving or Christmas table, but for the dinner table on those nights that you’re exhausted from all the holiday hubbub. Those holiday times where you’ve just baked 12 dozen cookies and don’t want to spend more than an extra 30 minutes in the kitchen making dinner. Or those days that you’ve spent the last 6 hours battling other shoppers for the items on your Christmas list and just want to come home & do the least amount of prep possible but still enjoy a hot, filling, wonderful dinner. Those are the days this casserole is best for. You can even make it ahead of time and keep it in the fridge or freezer to pop in the oven. This is also one of those times that I told you about that I will use canned, prepared ingredients to make something wonderful :.) You can also add whatever you like to it. You like black olives? Throw in some sliced black olives. Green chiles? Sure! (But be careful because you’ve already got the salsa and the Salsa Con Queso.) Corn kernels? Sounds lovely! I make the plain version because that’s what we like for this dish. But feel free to jazz it up however you like.
Now, the idea of this dish being good for the holiday season occurred to me while I was already in the assembly process so I don’t have that great of a shot of the ingredients but I did my best.
The empty baking pan is in this shot to remind me to tell you that you HAVE to spray, grease, or otherwise lubricate the baking dish before you assemble everything. If you don’t you will NEVER get the food out of the dish. It will stick so bad you may have to contemplate just throwing the baking dish away. I know this from experience. Trust me. So when you think you have enough cooking spray in the dish, spray it a little more & move on to assembly. And in the bowl is a mixture of refried beans and salsa. Once again, sorry- I didn’t think of blogging this particular recipe until I was ready to put everything together in the pan.
Spread 2 of the tortillas with enough cheese sauce to create an even layer- about 2 tablespoons. Spread 1/3 of the bean/salsa mixture over that. Sprinkle 1/3 of your taco meat over the beans and finish with about half to 3/4 of a cup of cheese. There should be a decent layer of cheese but you should be able to clearly see the ingredients below it. I like cheese as much as the next person but this is a lasagna. If you put too much cheese between the layers you’ll just end up with a mess when you go to serve it. Now, make 2 more layers like this one and you’re done. That’s it. It’s ready to go in the oven. It really is the easiest Mexican you’ll ever make. And after about half an hour in the oven this is what you’ll end up with…
Oh-and a house that smells absolutely AMAZING! And the leftovers taste just as good as when it came out of the oven. I’ve actually made this just to have the leftovers in the fridge for lunches. It’s THAT good!
The recipe
6 Large Flour Tortillas (you can use any flavor you like but I just use the plain ones I buy at Sam’s)
About half a jar of Salsa Con Queso (you may not need that much but make sure you have it)
1 Can Refried Beans (any fat content you like. Any variety works)
3/4 C Salsa (any kind you like)
One 1-pound batch of prepared Taco Meat (I use the reduced sodium seasoning mix)
2 1/4 C Shredded Cheese (any kind you like. I use the Mexican Blend for just about everything)
The Method
*Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 13 x 9 baking dish.
*Spread 2 of the tortillas with about 2 T on each of the Salsa Con Queso, place in the bottom of the dish.
*Spread 1/3 of the bean & salsa mixture over the tortillas.
*Sprinkle 1/3 of the taco meat over the beans.
*Sprinkle about 3/4 C of the cheese over that.
*Repeat, making 2 more layers, 3 total.
*Bake uncovered for 30 minutes or until the bean mixture is bubbly and cheese is starting to brown on top.
*Let sit for at least 10 minutes before you serve or you may end up with burns to the mouth!
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we have over the years! I’m hoping to get our Christmas cookie recipes on here before Christmas but it may or may not happen. So if not, may you have a beautiful, blessed Christmas!
I call this “clumsy” Shepherd’s Pie because it is actually born of a mistake- as the best recipes often are. In my family Shepherd’s Pie has always been made by just mixing browned ground beef with corn and putting mashed potatoes on top. Tasty but a little bland for my taste so I tinkered with it until I found a result I liked. Far different than the traditional Shepherd’s Pie (Gordon Ramsey forgive me), it was still a dish I liked and so did most everyone else. So up until this recipe was born my Shepherd’s Pie consisted of steak, onions, garlic, and corn in gravy with mashed potatoes on top. One night while cooking dinner with my thoughts elsewhere, in blatant violation of my own rule, I made the mashed potatoes¬†way¬†too thick and the base¬†way¬†too runny. I went to spread the potatoes over the base and they sunk right in. I was appalled! Well, after much swearing and slamming of pots and pans I thought about what I was going to do next. We couldn’t afford to have the pizza fairy drop by that night and it was the beginning of the week so there were no left overs yet. In the end I mixed the potatoes into the base and spread drop biscuit dough over the top. I put it in the oven to bake, thoroughly convinced it was a disaster and no one would like it. I was, however, mistaken. Everyone liked it better than my¬†original¬†version! I’ve made it this way ever since.
On to the fun part!
You can make this with ground beef or ground turkey if you want but I much prefer round steak.
I like to brown the steak with the onions, add the garlic & cook for a minute and then simmer the whole lot in beef broth (which will later become gravy) for at least an hour. This gives it wonderful flavor and makes the steak bits SO tender- but
you don’t have to do it that way.
.
At this point you either make gravy or simmer the meat in the broth. The meat is sitting in a bowl because I use bullion cubes for broth and I like to use the pan the meat was cooked in so all the browned bits make it into the gravy. BTW, I do this EVERY TIME I make gravy. It’s just the way things should be done so that you end up with the most flavor. If you’re using canned or boxed broth you can just leave everything in the¬†pan. Once you have your broth in the pan you can add the meat mixture back in along with your corn. I use frozen but you can use drained, canned corn if you want. If you use frozen go ahead and boil the mixture in the broth for a few minutes just to give it a head start on cooking. Next make your broth into gravy. I use a corn starch (corn flour) slurry of 1/4 C water and 2 T corn starch mixed together. DO NOT just put the corn starch into the hot broth!! It will instantly clump & ruin the gravy.
Let’s talk mashed potatoes. For things like this I make mine out of potato flakes mixed with milk, butter and chicken broth. I NEVER use water to make mashed potatoes- fresh or boxed. The same goes for rice, BTW. Unless I’m cooking for a vegetarian I just don’t see any point in letting this opportunity for adding flavor to an otherwise bland dish go to waste. Potatoes and rice cooked with chicken broth have a rich flavor. Potatoes and rice cooked in water tend to have the flavor of wall paper paste. While your meat is browning go ahead & make your potatoes. It’s¬†OK¬†if they cool off while you’re doing other things.
When the mashed potatoes are done and your gravy has thickened add the potatoes to the meat mixture and stir. Don’t stir too much- you want to be able to see that there are mashed potatoes in there. It should look like this:
Now let that mixture sit while you make the biscuit topping. I use Bisquick and milk. Usually I addParmesan¬†cheese but this time I forgot. Didn’t even cross my mind while I was gathering ingredients. But it didn’t make too much difference- the dish is still super yummy! You’re making drop biscuit dough- slightly runny drop biscuit dough. You want it to spread a bit when you drop it onto the casserole.
Yes- it looks like cottage cheese. It’s supposed to. When this is ready pour the meat mixture into a 13 x 9 baking dish. Now drop the topping mix by large dollops onto the top of the meat mixture.
Put into the oven until the biscuits are as browned as you like them and the gravy is bubbly.
So easy and so¬†definitely¬†comfort food! Awesome on a cold winter night. So here’s to fortuitous mistakes! May all of yours turn out as well as mine :.)
Clumsy¬†Shepherd‘s¬†Pie
1 Lb Round Steak (or Ground Turkey or Ground Beef)
1/2 Medium Onion, chopped
3 cloves Garlic, minced
4 C Beef Broth (Canned, Boxed, or made from Bullion Cubes)
1/2 small bag Frozen Sweet Corn (or 1 can corn)
Cornstarch Slurry made from 1/4 C cool or cold water & 2 T cornstarch
4 servings Mashed Potatoes (about 3 cups)
1 recipe Drop Biscuit Dough (recipe below)
Drop Biscuit Dough
2 C Bisquick (or similar baking mix)
1 C Milk
1/2 C Parmesan Cheese
Combine well in medium bowl. Let sit 5 minutes.
To assemble casserole:
Make the mashed potatoes in whichever manner you choose. Brown meat, draining if using ground. Halfway through cooking, add onions. Once meat is brown and onions are golden add garlic and cook for one minute. Add broth or remove mixture to bowl to make broth if using bullion cubes. Add corn and let boil 5 minutes. Make the gravy by slowly adding the cornstarch slurry to the broth and meat mixture, stirring constantly. Let the mixture come to a boil, thickening fully. Once thickened, take off the heat. Make the drop biscuit dough and allow to rest 5 minutes. Add mashed potatoes to mixture, stirring well but not fully incorporating them. Pour mixture into a 13 x 9 baking dish and drop or spread biscuit dough over the top. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes or until biscuits are browned and gravy is bubbly. Let cool 10 minutes or warn people that it will be VERY HOT!