Thursday, January 19, 2012

Shepherd's Pie with a Gluten-free, Vegetarian Twist

I admit it...I have never had shepherd's pie with meat in it. It never really looked that appealing to me. But once I became a vegetarian, I loved the idea of veggies with mashed potatoes in a pie form. We used to use vegetarian burger crumbles for the bottom, you know the ones I'm talking about. It looks somewhat like hamburger and tastes meaty and chewy. But since those are made of wheat gluten, that was put on the do-not-eat list years ago. What now? I make it frequently with Quorn tenders and it is quite good, but still not what I remember.
Shepherd's Pie right out of the oven, yum!

Enter Amy's Bistro Burgers, which are gluten free and vegetarian. Crumble them up and it's the closest you can get to the texture of meat on the bottom. And before I get letters and comments, let me just say that I am not a big fan of trying to recreate meat in a vegetarian way. I just love the texture of something firm and chewy on the bottom of this type of pie and veggies just don't get it. This seems to do the trick, and the entire pie was gone in two days (Mom came over and had dinner) including breakfast. Yum. Try it with your favorite veggies, although these work just fine for us. Use fresh veggies as much as you can, it's just so much better.
Chock full of veggies, crumbles and potatoes

Veggie, GF Shepherd's Pie

4 Amy's Bistro Burger Patties, thawed and crumbled
1 sweet onion, chopped
1 tsp chopped garlic
pinch of cumin

2 cups of fresh green beans, cleaned and chopped
1 cup fresh or frozen corn
1 TBS wheat-free tamari

2 cups mashed potatoes (homemade or store-bought)
1 TBS butter
salt/pepper/olive oil

1. Heat oven to 375
2. Saute onion till soft in a small bit of olive oil and salt.
3. Add burger crumbles, garlic, salt, pepper and cumin. Cook till browned.
4. Pour burger mixture into the bottom of a sprayed 9x9 glass baking dish.
5. Add green beans and 4 TBS water to the same pan (no need to clean it) and cover for about 5 minutes or until the water is steamed and beans are cooked slightly.
6. Add 1 Tbs olive oil and corn. (if corn is frozen, let it cook for a bit before going on to next step)
7. Add Tamari and let cook without stirring for a few minutes to let the veggies caramelize.
8. Spread veggie layer over burger layer in baking dish.
9. Prepare mashed potatoes the way you usually do. I used a fresh kind from Costco and just microwave it for a few minutes, then add a TBS of butter, salt and pepper.
10. Cover top of pie evenly with mashed potatoes and bake for 20 minutes.
11. Broil for 10 minutes under low to brown the top. Watch carefully, all ovens are different.
12. Let sit for a minute and serve.


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