A tasty filling of ground beef, lamb and potatoes gets topped with a cheesy layer of mashed potatoes in Rach's "Royal" riff on Shepherd's Pie.
- 4 large russet potatoes, peeled and cut into ¾-inch cubes
- Salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 pound ground sirloin
- 1 pound ground lamb
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 stalk celery, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground caraway or whole caraway seeds
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 tablespoons flour
- ½ cup white wine or dry sherry
- One 10.5-ounce can beef consommé, or 1 ½ cups beef or chicken stock
- ¾ cup sour cream
- ¼ cup fresh chives, chopped
- 1 large egg yolk
- About 8 ounces shredded Gruyere or white cheddar
- ⅓ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped (handful)
In a medium pot, cover the potatoes with cold water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Salt the water and reduce heat a bit to keep the water at a gentle boil. Cook the potatoes until tender when pierced with a knife, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Add the oil, one turn of the pan, and then add 1 tablespoon butter. When the butter melts, add the ground meat; cook, stirring often and breaking up the meat with a spoon, until brown, about 8 minutes. Season the meat with salt and pepper. Add the onion, carrot, celery, Worcestershire, thyme, garlic, caraway and cumin. Cook, stirring often, until vegetables soften, about 8 minutes. Stir in the flour. Add the wine and consommé and stir until thickened, about 1 minute. Reduce heat enough to maintain a simmer.
Turn on the broiler.
Drain the potatoes. Using a potato ricer or food mill, puree the potatoes back into the hot pot. Mix in the remaining 2 tablespoons butter, the sour cream, chives and egg yolk; season.
Spread the potatoes over the meat and veggies in the skillet. Top with the cheese. Broil until the top is browned and the edges bubble, about 4 minutes. Top with parsley. Serve the pie directly from the skillet.