There are a handful of recipes from my childhood that I still make and enjoy: homemade tacos, beef stew and shepherd’s pie. Shepherd’s Pie is one of my all time favorite recipes because let’s face it, there are mashed potatoes involved. In my later years as my taste buds have matured, I’ve enjoyed a bit more of a gourmet version of this childhood dish. And with St. Patrick’s Day this week I thought I would give it a bit of a makeover: Turkey Sausage Shepherd’s Pie.
I typically make my shepherd’s pie with ground beef, or a mixture of beef and lamb. I decided to go in a different direction this time around and used the all-new Jennie-O All Natural Turkey Sausage. With a world of flavors already infused in the turkey sausage I thought that would be a good base for my meat mixture. Not to mention it contains less fat than regular pork sausage.
Overall this dish is really quick and easy to make. If you get your potatoes boiling ahead of making the meat, you’ll be able to get through the prep in no time. I used a combination of fresh peas, carrots and leeks in the meat mixture and for an extra dose of flavor deglazed the pan with a shot of whiskey. You can skip this step if you’d like. I also mixed a handful of cheddar cheese into the mashed potatoes for an extra creamy texture.
I decided to make my Shepherd’s Pies individualized in miniature cast iron skillets but you can also prefer the dish in an 8-inch pie pan. If all of your ingredients are still warm, you can just assemble the pie and pop it into the broiler for 10-15 minutes to allow a crisp crust to form on top of the potatoes.
If you’re looking for a little St. Patrick’s Day inspiration this week, grab a package of Jennie-O All Natural Turkey Sausage and head to your kitchen to cook up a delicious meal for your family.
- 2 tablespoons Olive Oil
- 16 ounces Jennie-O All Natural Turkey Sausage
- 2 Carrots, peeled and diced
- 2 Leeks, white parts only, diced
- 1 ounce Irish Whiskey
- 3 tablespoons Flour
- 1 cup Chicken Stock
- 1 cup Peas (fresh or frozen)
- Kosher Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper
- 3 pounds Yukon Gold Potatoes, peeled and diced
- ½ cup butter
- ½ cup half and half
- 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- Place the potatoes in a large pot of cool, salted water. Bring to boil and cook for 10-12 minutes, until tender. Drain and place in a large bowl. Mash together with the butter and half and half until creamy. Stir in the cheddar cheese.
- In a cast iron skillet over medium heat, add the olive oil and sausage and cook until it has crisped and rendered its fat.
- Add the carrots and leeks, cooking until the vegetables have softened. Deglaze the pan with whiskey.
- Add the flour and cook until the flour has integrated and a wet sand texture. Add the peas and chicken stock. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cook until the sauce comes together and thickens, about 10 minutes.
- Place the filling into an 8-inch pie plate and top with the mashed potatoes. Broil on high for 10-15 minutes, until golden brown.
- Serve immediately.
This recipe is sponsored by Jennie-O. All opinions expressed are my own.