Shepherd's Pie (AKA Cottage Pie)

Shepherd's Pie (AKA Cottage Pie)

4-6 Servings


The Meat Mixture:
1 Tbsp oil
1 1/2 lb beef or lamb (stew meat or ground)
3/4 cup beef broth or water
1/2 cup red wine or beer (or additional broth)
1 large onion, diced
1 large carrot, diced
2 ribs celery, sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp tomato paste (optional)
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp thyme, fresh or dried
1/4 tsp rosemary, fresh or dried
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 lb russet or Yukon Gold potatoes (or more if you like lots of potatoes)
1 cup frozen peas or corn
To Finish:
3 Tbsp cornstarch
3 1/2 Tbsp water
3 Tbsp butter
1/4 - 1/3 cup cream or milk
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg yolk (optional but really good)


Press Saute and when the display says Hot, add the oil. Brown the meat in batches to prevent crowding. Get it nice and brown, not just gray. Drain off any excess fat. 

Add the broth or water and the wine or beer, if using. Thoroughly deglaze the pot: scrape all the browned bits up off the bottom. This will prevent the Burn warning. 

Add all other ingredients of the Meat Mixture except the potatoes and the peas or corn. Bring the mixture to a boil and then press Cancel. Give it a final stir to make sure nothing is stuck on the bottom.

Peel and cut the potatoes in 2” chunks. Put them in a pan, casserole dish or tin foil boat and place on top of the meat mixture. Do not cover with foil. Save the peas or corn for later.

Close the pot and set the valve to Sealing. Push Pressure Cook (or Manual) and adjust time using the + or - button to get to 20 minutes if using stew meat, 10 minutes if using ground meat. 

Turn the oven on to 375 F now. When the IP beeps that it's done, leave it for 5 minutes natural release and then flip the valve to Venting for a quick release. When the pin drops, open the pot and press Cancel. 

Remove the potatoes and cover them with a plate or some tin foil for now. Stir the cornstarch and water into a smooth slurry. Discard the bay leaf and press Saute. When it's boiling, add about half the cornstarch slurry and stir while it thickens and boils. If you want thicker gravy, add more slurry. Press Cancel and stir in the frozen peas or corn. 

Mash the potatoes and add the butter. Mix 1/4 cup cream or milk with the egg yolk (if using) and add it to the potatoes. Add more cream/milk if you like softer potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste.  

Spray a baking dish (or individual baking dishes) with cooking spray and pour the meat mixture into it. Spoon or pipe the mashed potato mixture on top. (My mom used to spread the potatoes over the top and then drag a fork over them to form rows. It was pretty. I still do this.)

Optional: dot with little pieces of butter or sprinkle with grated cheese. Bake at 375 F for 15-25 minutes until golden brown. Let it rest for a few minutes on the counter before serving.  Serve and enjoy the flavours of my childhood.