Mexican Shepard's Pie
As you know, I love Mexican food and I really enjoy cooking it! I also have an infinity for Irish food after traveling to Ireland last year. I would never think to combine these two styles of food or even recognize any similarities. Then I made what I'm calling... Mexican Shepard's Pie.
It all started with chorizo. Who doesn't absolutely adore chorizo?! We already had ground beef but not enough for a full dish. So, I cooked up the chorizo and then added in the ground beef and had a perfect mixture of a spicy seasoned sausage and salt and peppered ground beef.
Let me back up a little, I did make the mash potatoes first. This way they are all finished once the layering of the dish begins. I made my usual mashed potatoes which meant peeling and cutting the potatoes into large chunks. Boiling. Then smashing the soft potatoes and mixing in butter, milk, sour cream, minced garlic, salt, pepper and this time a little bit of onion powder.
After the mashed potatoes were finished, I cooked the meat (1/2 chorizo, 1/2 mince) and spread out the meat into the glass dish. No need to butter the pan because of the meat in the first layer with all the juices - it's all set. I sprinkled a light layer of cheese after the layer of chorizo/beef.
The mashed potatoes are done and ready when needed, and the first layer is all accounted for. Now it's time for some vegetables. This is where I decided to run full throttle with a more Mexican style of Shepard's pie. A traditional Shepard's pie would typically have onions, peas and carrots for the vegetable layer. I went with onion, red peppers, green peppers, yellow peppers, and corn! The corn really made this dish :) I sautéed the chopped onion in the juices from the chorizo and a little extra olive oil, and then added in the minced garlic.
Next, the peppers - we happened to have a frozen pepper medley which worked great, though fresh peppers are always better. Then I added in frozen corn. Due to using frozen vegetables, I had to drain a fair amount of water. Season with salt and pepper and any other desired flavors! The vegetables are now ready to enter the dish.
It's mashed potatoes time! Use a baking spatula to get all the mashed potatoes out and spread into a thick layer on top of the meat and veggies.
This looks like nshima!!! (Cornmeal staple food in Zambia)
Spread out the mashed potatoes and top with four Mexican cheese.
Cover with foil. I made it ahead and let it sit for a few hours - this often makes the dish better kind of like marinating the flavors together. I always let lasagna refrigerate overnight. For this I just had it sit for a few hours, though making it the day before would have worked also!
Bake for 25 minutes at 350F. Bake with foil on and then remove for the last 10 minutes.
If you'd like the full recipe listed out with ingredients and directions, let me know and I'd be happy to add it on! I hope the description and photos could help you to try making this dish. My family was obsessed with it so I want to share the joy! Happy cooking :)