Bacon-Guinness Shepherd’s Pie

Since beginning this blog, I’ve made it a priority to cook things that I’ve never tried making before. This Monday, as I mourned the loss of St. Paddy’s Day to the most horrible day of the week, I came to the realization that I had never tried making the most simple and satisfying of Irish dinners: the glorious shepherd’s pie.

Of course, after a limited perusal of online recipes I decided that if I was going to tackled this classic dish, I would embrace the nature of the original while adding an “I Love Food & Beer” twist. Meaning? Add bacon and beer, of course!

Maybe I’m a little biased, but I’m very proud of this recipe: it may not be pretty, but it was DELICIOUS!

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Garlic Mashed Potato Topping:

  • 4 Large russet potatoes, pelled and quartered

  • 10 whole garlic cloves, peeled

  • ½ cup sour cream

  • Salt and pepper

  • ¼ cup beef broth

  • ¼ cup heavy cream

  • 4 tbsp butter, softened

Meat Filling:

  • 6 slices Hempler’s pepper bacon, cut in small slices

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil

  • 2 medium onions, chopped

  • 1 tsp sugar

  • 1 lb ground lamb

  • ¾ lb ground beef

  • salt and pepper

  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and chopped

  • ¾ cup frozen peas

  • ¾ cup frozen corn

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 tbsp tomato paste

  • 1 tbsp flour

  • 1 12 oz can of Guinness

  • ½ cup beef broth

  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary

  • 1 cup grated cheddar

  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

Prepare the garlic potato topping first:

Place the potatoes and garlic in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook, uncovered, until the potatoes are fork-tender, about 15 minutes. Drain, and transfer the potatoes and garlic to a large mixing bowl. Add the sour cream, broth, cream, and butter.

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Beat on low speed in the mixer until the potatoes are light and fluffy, which should only take about 3 minutes. add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and set aside.

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 Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

To prepare the meat filling:

Heat a large stove-top crock-pot over medium heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally until browned and almost crispy. Set aside the bacon on a paper towel.

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Leave the drippings in the skillet, and cook the onions in a tablespoon of oil until they’re soft and slightly browned (about 6-7 minutes).

 Sprinkle in the sugar, and stir, allowing the onions to caramelize for 3-4 minutes. Create a well in the onions, and add the beef and lamb. Stir in the beef and lamb, and brown the meat. Stir occasionally over medium-high heat for 6 to 7 minutes, until the meat is nicely browned.

Stir in the carrots, peas, corn and garlic and cook, stirring, until the vegetables begin to soften (about 5 minutes). Stir in the tomato paste and flour and cook, stirring. about 2 minutes, until the mix is well-blended.

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Pour in the Guinness, and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for about 3 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium and stir with a wooden spoon to scrape the browned goodness from the bottom of the pot.

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Return the cooked bacon to the pot, and add the broth, rosemary, a pinch of salt and pepper, and bring the whole shebang to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the sauce thickens, which should take about 15 minutes.

 If your cooking pot isn’t oven proof, then spoon the meat mixture into a baking dish coated with cooking spray. If your cooking pot is oven safe, then skip that last one.

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Spread the potato topping evenly over the meat mixture. Bake for about 30 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven and sprinkle with the cheese, and then return it to the oven for a final 10 minutes.

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Let it rest for about 10 minutes out of the onion before serving sprinkled with parsley.

 Enjoy with a Guinness, of course. Slainte!

I couldn't wait to take the picture... it was too good.
I couldn’t wait to take the picture… it was too good.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. This is probably the best, and easiest to follow, recipe I have found. Delicious! The only probably was that the Guinness came in 14.9 ounce cans as opposed the the 12 ounces called for in the recipe. What to do with the extra 2.9 ounces…

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