The Chew & Cooking Light Challenge: Shepherd's Pie

My friends at Cooking Light offered me a challenge to change up a recipe or craft provided by the folks at ABC's The Chew. There were options like Chocolate Pumpkin Pie and Edible Ornaments - but I went for something that I thought the husband would eat and I could get my act together to buy for and make in 3 days - Christine's Shepherd's Pie!

The challenge is that we're supposed to take their recipe and make 1-3 changes to it. So since this is also a Cooking Light challenge - I decided to try and lighten up the Shepherd's Pie. There weren't a lot of places for this but there was a stick of butter and ground beef...

So I started by using ground turkey breast meat. I stopped into Stehlin's Meat Market (finally) and pretty much fell in love with the place. I picked up pork chops, ham salad, a femur bone for the dog and asked if they had ground turkey - they offered up ground turkey breast that they ground themselves or some combo of light & dark that came from a tube. The man behind the counter smiled when I chose the turkey breast.

The original recipe also called for peas & carrots - Larry hates peas - so I went with a bit of fresh broccoli. In addition to the ingredient changes - I cut the recipe in half - there's only two of us - so I don't want so many leftovers that we have to eat this for 2 weeks.

Instead of the stick of butter - I used 1 Tablespoon of butter and then added a couple of teaspoons of olive oil when sautéing the vegetables and turkey.

I started by attempting to make my own mashed potatoes with some Yukon golds - I was going to use light sour cream instead of butter - but I made the mistake (I think anyway) of using the mixer on these instead of mashing by hand. They quickly turned into a big gummy ball of tasteless goo. And they hit the garbage.

What's my backup when the potatoes are gone? Instant. Sigh. I was on a timetable and didn't have any other options.

So I put all of my meat & veggies together - added a little beef broth and Worcestershire sauce - and put them in the casserole dish. Then I topped with the mashed potatoes.

Into the oven it went - and I even used the broiler for the first time in my gas stove - flames freak me out a bit. Little crispy tips even!

Here's the finished product - it doesn't look too bad does it!?!

Well I have to say - it tasted like crap! Hahaha - how's that for honesty?! It was dry and tasteless. I was hoping that this would be a recipe you can swap the turkey for beef - but I don't think so. I also don't think the instant potatoes helped it any. The inside wasn't saucy enough either. I was hoping for kind of an alternative to Chicken Pot Pie - but no - not so much.

Oh well - I made the effort! Do any of you have a great Shepherd's Pie recipe? If so - share it! I think I would like it. Funny part is - I bet Larry won't mind it - he kind of likes bland food! We'll see what he says when he eats it for lunch tomorrow!

1 comment

  1. Your honesty made me smile. It sounded great as you were describing it. What a bummer it didn't turn out as hoped. But yes, it does look tasty!