zaftigvegan (zaftigvegan) wrote in vegancooking,
zaftigvegan
zaftigvegan
vegancooking

Lentil Shepherd's Pie



I think this mixture of lentils & ground walnuts (plus whatever veg you have on hand) is a perfect filling for shepherd's pie because they are so dark and earthy tasting. Contrasted with the fluffiness of the mashed potato crust and topped with this savory crimini mushroom & garlic sauce and you've got the perfect meal for a chilly February evening.



Lentil Shepherd's Pie
with crimini mushroom and garlic sauce

Filling:
2 1/3 cups dry lentils
1 cup coarsely ground walnuts
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, diced
1 parsnip, diced
1/2 head of green cabbage, finely chopped
handful of fresh parsley, minced
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
3 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tsp dried, sweet basil
1 tsp ground thyme
couple of pinches of kelp powder (optional; don't use too much or the food will taste muddy)
ground pepper to taste

Topping:
6 - 8 large potatoes (I used Yukon gold), peeled and chopped
3 tbsp vegan margarine
splash of milk
salt and pepper to taste
Optional: 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg, handful of grated vegan cheese

Place the lentils in a pot and add water until they are covered by an inch or so. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer and let cook for 35 - 40 minutes, or until tender. Drain and set aside.

In a large skillet, heat a couple of tablespoons of oil and add the onion. Saute for a few minutes, then add the carrot and parsnip. Saute another few minutes, then add in the garlic and cabbage. Cook, stirring occassionally, until the veggies begin to brown a bit. Add in the rest of the ingredients, stir well, and let cook until much of the liquid has evaporated off - maybe ten minutes or so.

Meanwhile, set a large pot of water on to boil. Add the potatoes, return to a boil, and then reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Cook for 8 - 10 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Strain and mash with the margarine, milk and other ingredients, as desired.

Preheat oven to 350F.

Spread the cooked lentil mixture into large casserole or 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Press down slightly so that it is compacted, but don't mash it. Top with the mashed potato mixture. You can get fancy and score the potatoes with a fork or use a piping bag to create pretty designs if you like. Dot the top with a little more vegan margarine or lightly brush with oil. Bake for 30 - 35 minutes or until the pie is golden. Let stand for five minutes before slicing.

Serves 6 - 8, freezes beautifully for future meals.

While the pie is baking, make the sauce.

Savoury Mushroom Garlic Sauce

2 cups sliced crimini mushrooms (any mushrooms will do, these are just my favourite)
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp oil
2 tbsp flour
1 1/3 cups water or vegetable stock
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
2 tsp dried sweet basil
salt and pepper to taste

Sautee the mushrooms in the oil until they release their juice. Add the garlic and stir for a minute. Sprinkle with the flour and stir until everything is coated and the flour begins to sizzle. Add the water or stock in a slow, steady stream, stirring the whole time. Add the remaining ingredients and cook until thickened. Serve over shepherd's pie, or anything else you desire. It's great on thick slices of whole grain toast, for instance.

Tags: beans-lentils, condiments-sauces, ethnic food-british, main dishes-shepherds pies, vegetables-mushrooms
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