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Goats, gripes, and grasping for greatness
Crock pot shepherd's pie 
10th-Oct-2012 08:46 am

On Monday night, Achaosofkittens slaved over the preparations for a crock-pot version of shepherd's pie (beef, not lamb). On Tuesday morning, the house smelled amazing. He finished it and we ate it last night. I thought that the tomato taste made it more like "shepherd sloppy joe" to me. Achaosofkittens also commented that the crock pot can't crisp the top of the mashed potatoes either. But whatever it was that we ate, I thought it was quite good. (I especially liked the peas! They were perfect!) CK added tabasco to his bowl, and pronounced it acceptable as well. And there are six servings of leftovers, too, so I know what's for lunch tomorrow for telework day! Mmmmmmm.

If we do this one again, I think there are a couple of changes to try. There was no crunch or really any variation from bite to bite. The peas were the only distinct flavor/texture in the mixture, and they were added at the end. We talked about other possible changes, including adding whole water chesnuts, pearl onions, and maybe even celery to give it some variation and crunch.

(Deleted comment)
10th-Oct-2012 01:34 pm (UTC)
I plan to add even more peas to the leftovers! PEAS!
10th-Oct-2012 08:37 pm (UTC)
Looks like the tomato paste is just for thickening. If the flavor is overwhelming, I'd halve it to 1 tablespoon. I'd also sub worchestershire sauce for the soy, too. Bit more authentic to Cottage Pie (beef, not lamb). And if you want a bit of crunch, I might suggest you finish with the mashed potatoes in the oven with a bit of cheddar cheese instead of in the crock pot. (Although to be honest, given that you brown the meat first, then finish it in the oven, I'm not sure why the crock pot is even involved. Brown the meat, prep the sauce, and then just set to a slow simmer while you cook and prep the mash. Assemble, then fire it under the broiler to brown the top. Probably about an hour total prep time...)
11th-Oct-2012 06:36 pm (UTC)
As far as overwhelming, it's not that, it's that I don't like tomato in my non-tomato dishes. It makes me irrationally unhappy if I can taste it at all.

If my memory serves, I did have a discussion about how this is really just an oven dish, and the crock pot is only useful if you want to turn it on and go to bed, and don't trust the "time-cook" feature on the oven. I don't remember who I was talking with, though...

Edited at 2012-10-11 06:38 pm (UTC)
10th-Oct-2012 11:17 pm (UTC)
That sounds tasty!
11th-Oct-2012 06:37 pm (UTC)
It is! I had it again for lunch too.
11th-Oct-2012 05:00 pm (UTC)
Shepherd's pie is all about the peas. :)
11th-Oct-2012 06:37 pm (UTC)
Youuuuuu betcha!
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