I luuuuuuuv Shepard’s pie, I use to make it all the time but since I started blogging I have been experimenting with some new recipes and trying new dishes so I forgot all about it. So today I thought why not make a twist in my Shepard’s pie… instead of just make the minced meat and sauce I made some meatballs. I bought a piece of pork shoulder and asked the butcher to grind it for me. That way you make sure you have a good product to start. It makes all the difference, trust me. The secret of a great meatball is not to over mix the meat and end up like The Swedish Chef.
Meatball Shepard’s Style
For the Meatballs
- 2 ponds of pork shoulder minced
- 1 small red onion chopped
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 8 to 10 cremini mushrooms chopped
- 1 teaspoon of red chili flakes
- 3 eggs lightly beaten
- 4 slices of potato bread minced
- 2 tablespoons of milk
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 tablespoons of Brandy or dry Sherry
- 5 tablespoons of honey melted
- 1 small bunch of parsley chopped
- 1 1/3 teaspoon Salt
- ½ teaspoon of black pepper
Pre heat the oven 450 F. Then start with the aromatics, heat the oil in a skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the onions, garlic, red chili flakes and mushroom until they are golden stirring frequently. Then de-glaze the pan with Brandy and let the alcohol evaporates. Transfer to a bowl and let it cool down. In a food processor put the bread slices and the milk and pulse 7 to 10 times. Now mix together the aromatics, the bread mix, the eggs, and parsley until everything is well incorporated. Line a baking tray with aluminum paper and drizzle with olive oil. Only now mix the minced meat and season with salt and pepper. Mix it well with a fork being careful to not pack the mix. We don’t want cement like meatballs do we? I didn’t actually roll my meatballs…I used a small ice cream scoop to form my balls that way I had them all the same size. Now here is a trick to caramelize and get a yummy crust, arrange the meatballs pretty close together and brush them with the melted honey. Bake them in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes.
Ps: You can test the seasoning frying a little of the mix in 1 teaspoon of canola oil.
For the Mashed Potatoes:
- 1 1/2 lbs Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and quartered length-wise
- 1/2-teaspoon salt
- 4 Tbsp heavy cream
- 2 Tbsp butter
- 1 Tbsp milk
- ½ cup of Parmesan cheese
- Salt and Pepper
Put potatoes into a saucepan. Add 1/2-teaspoon salt. Add water until potatoes are covered. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered, 15-20 minutes, or until done – a fork can easily be poked through them. Warm cream and melt butter, together, in a small pan. Drain water from potatoes. Put hot potatoes into a bowl. Add cream and melted butter. Use potato masher to mash potatoes until well mashed adding milk to achieve the consistency you desire. Add the Parmesan cheese. Salt and pepper to taste.
To finish my pie, I used some of my favorite tomato sauce in the bottom of the pan, then I put 4 meatballs and covered with the mashed potato. Baked it in the oven 350 F for few minutes to melt the cheese and create a golden crust on top.