Shannon Stacey

The glory that is leftover shepherd’s pie

Lately I’ve been craving leftover shepherd’s pie for lunch, which meant I had to make a shepherd’s pie for dinner.

A big shepherd's pie

It was good. It was shepherd’s pie, which is unexceptional if you don’t have the necessary knack for salt, pepper and butter, but it’s a good, hearty winter meal.

A plate of perfectly okay shepherd's pie

Now why would I crave leftovers of a fairly serviceable meal? Because leftover shepherd’s pie is a gift from the food gods. There are a lot of foods that are even better reheated the next day, of which chili is arguably the best. But leftover shepherd’s pie is a different thing entirely. You don’t pop this stuff in the microwave for thirty seconds and stir.

One does not simply microwave shepherd's pie

First, you have to start with good shepherd’s pie. Properly seasoned. Good, stiff, hand-mashed potatoes. (And no, whipped potatoes don’t count. Mashed. By. Hand.) If you don’t start with a properly made shepherd’s pie, you’ll end up with mush.

So first, you melt an obscene amount of butter in a frying pan.

Obscene amount of butter melting in a pan

Then you dump in the leftover shepherd’s pie and add a little garlic salt and more pepper, because shepherd’s pie can never have too much pepper. Then you leave it alone because you want the potatoes to get that buttery, brown crunch going on. Then you fry it even longer.

Frying it up

Then you add the cheese. How much cheese? All of it. I actually prefer American cheese on my leftover shepherd’s pie, but I don’t have any because…I ate it all.

Obscene amounts of shredded cheddar melting on the food

Then you fold the cheese all in so it’s a giant mass of…heaven.

Fried up shepherd's pie with melted cheese all up in it

Then you thank the food gods you don’t have to see your personal trainer again until Tuesday and dig in.

3 comments to “The glory that is leftover shepherd’s pie”

  1. Lee
      · March 6th, 2015 at 4:04 pm · Link

    Nope. Nope. Nope. Not for all the nopes in Nopeville.

    Shepherd’s pie is just one of those foods I will only eat under extreme duress. Your leftovers sound serviceable, but I’m still suspicious.

    I feel the same way about pot roast. Mama don’t do no mushy foods. :)

  2. Shannon
      · March 6th, 2015 at 4:17 pm · Link

    I don’t make it often, especially since the kid barely tolerate it. (Texture.) But once the craving for shepherd’s pie sets in, there’s nothing for it but to make a batch.

  3. library addict
      · March 6th, 2015 at 6:40 pm · Link

    I like the way you make shepherd’s pie. My mother always put peas in it (we got the recipe while living in England) and I don’t eat peas. So I always just ate the hamburger and potatoes she’d set aside for me the day of. Never got to eat the leftovers.

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