Shepherd’s pie first originated in the north of England and Scotland during the 18th century, where there were large numbers of sheep. It was first known as cottage pie, which was popular during the early 1790s. At that time, a cottage was a modest dwelling for the poor rural workers. Cottage pie was made with leftover meat, and topped with mashed potatoes. Vegetables and spices were added, and this was a good way to use leftover food and make a hearty meal. This was also the time when the potato was being introduced as an edible crop affordable for the poor. The different versions of this pie were created by frugal peasant housewives looking for creative ways to serve leftover meat to their families. At first there were two versions. The shepherd’s pie became known for a dish made with minced lamb meat topped with the mashed potatoes, and the cottage pie was made with minced beef. With the growing number of shepherds in northern England and Scotland, the name shepherds pie eventually became the common name for this dish. Here is a delicious version of vegetarian shepherd’s pie for you to try.
Vegetarian shepherd’s pie (serves 6)
- 6 large potatoes, sliced into one inch pieces
- 1 small head of green cabbage (7 cups chopped)
- 1/2 teaspoon of caraway seeds, crushed
- 3/4 cup of water
- 3 vegetarian burgers, ground to meat like sized particles
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 8 ounces of fresh mushrooms, sliced
- 1 eight ounce can of tomato sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon of maple syrup granules
- 3/4 cup of milk or soy milk
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- non stick cooking spray
- Heat potatoes to boiling in a saucepan over high heat with enough water to cover.
- Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 10 to 15 minutes until potatoes are tender.
- Drain potatoes, cover saucepan and set aside.
- Coat a fry pan with non stick cooking spray and cook chopped cabbage 1 minute, stirring constantly.
- Add caraway seeds and 3/4 cup of water.
- Cover and simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cabbage in tender.
- Spoon cabbage into medium sized ovenproof baking dish.
- Coat the same fry pan again with non stick cooking spray and stir fry the ground vegetarian burgers, onion, and mushrooms for 4 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato sauce and maple syrup granules.
- Spoon the mixture over the cabbage in the baking dish.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Mashed the cooked potatoes with the milk and salt until smooth.
- Spoon mashed potatoes over burger mix in baking dish, making sure to cover surface entirely.
- Bake for 35 minutes or until cabbage mixture is hot and potatoes are lightly browned.