Monday, November 12, 2012

Primal Shepherd's Pie + Long distance date night tip

In a long distance relationship, you have to come up with little things to keep the romance alive.  Our little "thing" that we came up with is Skype cooking date nights!  Every Friday (unless one of us has something scheduled), we choose a recipe (we usually try to pick something primal or paleo), and we Skype with each other while we both make the same dish.  It's the best of all worlds, really - we get to spend quality time with each other, and at the end of it all, we get a great meal!

On Thursday, Tommy decided that we should make primal shepherd's pie, with sweet potato mash.  I looked around everywhere and couldn't find a recipe.  I called my mom and asked for her regular mashed potato recipe, and then continued from there.  My recipe is listed below - I think Tom added a few extra spices to his (rosemary & cinnamon)

For the sweet potato mash:
2 sweet potatoes
1-2 tbsp butter
salt & pepper
1/4 cup (or less) of milk of your choosing (unsweetened/unflavoured almond or coconut, or regular milk)

For the meat:
1 lb. ground beef
olive oil
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1 cup peas & carrots (I just use frozen, but if you prefer fresh, go for it)
Spices to taste (I used salt, pepper & garlic powder)

shredded cheddar cheese (about 1/4-1/2 cup)

1. Begin by washing, peeling and cubing your sweet potatoes.  Add them to a sauce pot filled with water. Bring the water to a boil, and boil until sweet potatoes are soft (about 20 minutes ought to do the trick).

2. While the potatoes are boiling, stir fry your meat.  Cook until it's done, then drain it & set aside in a dish.  At this point, you can probably set your oven to preheat to 350.

3. Strain the sweet potatoes and add to either a large bowl & hand mash, or a kitchenaid mixer bowl.  Add 1-2 TBSP butter, salt & pepper to taste.  Mix on low.  Add milk a drop at a time until you get the right consistency - be careful not to add too much at once, like I did!  Continue mixing until the consistency looks right.

4. Clean the frying pan.  Add olive oil, and your chopped onion.  Stir fry until soft.  Add your peas & carrots until cooked.  Add the meat back to the pan.  Add spices of your choosing (I went with salt, pepper & a bit of garlic powder).

5. In an oven-safe dish, add a layer of the meat-veggie mixture.  Then (Tommy's secret ingredient time!) add a thin layer of cheese.  Add the rest of your mixture.  Then top with the sweet potatoes, and add more cheese on top if desired.

6. Add the dish to a preheated oven, and cook for about 15-20 minutes (cheese should be melted, and the top a little browned)

Serve & enjoy!

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