Sincerely Carolina

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Day Nineteen: Gluten-Free with RR Challenge — Top O' the Shepherd's Pie to Ya!

by caroline

I've never tried shepherd's pie in my life. In fact, if you would have asked my a few days ago to try a slice of shepherd's pie, I might have turned up my nose at it, like the little guy in Dr. Seuss' Green Eggs and Ham.

I do not like it here or there, I do not like it anywhere!

But when I began to research a dinner to make for today's wonderful Irish holiday, I kept coming across recipes for that bugger of a dish. And so, I clicked on it, and I decided to see what all of the fuss was about.

After reading through several recipes, I realized the dish really sounded quite delicious and the only ingredient I would have a problem with would be the meat. Who would have thunk it?!

Lo and behold, I found myself choosing to make one for Day 19 of the Gluten-Free with Rachael Ray Challenge!

I, of course, made a few swaps to make this recipe gluten-free and vegetarian, but it turned out wonderfully. Gosh, I feel silly for being so judge-y, judge-y about this tasty little dish. Guess that's why you shouldn't judge a book by its cover … err … a pie by its name?

Here are the details:

RR's Ingredients The G-Spot Used
  • 2 pounds potatoes, such as russet, peeled and cubed
  • 4 Yukon Gold potatoes, 2 peeled and 2 with skins, cubed
  • 2 Tablespoons of sour cream
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 2 Tablespoons of butter
  • 1/2 cup cream, for a lighter version substitute vegetable or chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free vegetable stock or broth
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
  • 1 cup diced baby cremini mushrooms
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • ____________
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and chopped
  • ____________
  • 2 stalks of celery, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons gluten-free cornstarch
  • 1 cup beef stock or broth
  • 1 cup gluten-free vegetable stock or broth
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire, eyeball it
  • 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, a couple of handfuls
  • 1/2 cup frozen peas, a couple of handfuls
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • 2 tablespoons shredded, fresh Parmesan cheese


**NOTE: I chose to leave the skins on two potatoes because I like them. If you don't, then go ahead and peel them!


Boil potatoes in salted water until tender, about 12 minutes. Drain potatoes and pour them into a bowl. Combine sour cream, 2 Tablespoons of butter and 1/2 cup of vegetable stock or broth. Add the mixture into potatoes and mash until potatoes are almost smooth.

While potatoes boil, preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil to hot pan with carrots, parsnips, celery and onions. Cook veggies with for about 8 minutes, stirring frequently. Add mushrooms. In a second small skillet over medium heat cook remaining 2 Tablespoons of butter and cornstarch together, 2 minutes. Whisk in 1 cup of vegetable stock or broth and balsamic vinegar. Thicken gravy 1 minute. Add gravy to vegetables. Stir in peas.

Preheat broiler to high. Fill a small rectangular casserole or round, deep pie dish with vegetable mixture. Spoon potatoes over the mixture evenly. Top potatoes with paprika and broil 6 to 8 inches from the heat until potatoes are evenly browned. Top finished pie with shredded Parmesan and serve.

This recipe was a perfect re-introduction into "real" food after my tooth drama. Everything was fresh and delicious, and it really sticks to your ribs. I only had one slice and I was pretty stuffed — must have been the last few days of only liquids and soft foods! :D

Say! I like shepherd's pie!

I do! I like them, Irish lads and lassies!

Note: This recipe is gluten-free and vegetarian. (If you have allergies or food sensitivities, always check specific manufacturer’s products for allergens and/or cross-contamination issues.)


After realizing that shepherd's pie is really quite tasty after all, I will definitely think twice before making a snap judgment again about a food or recipe I haven't yet given a shot.

How about you? Have you ever thought you would hate a particular food or dish only to realize it was the exact opposite? Share your experiences below!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!