Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Skinny Shepherd's Pie

Hands on time: 25 minutes
Bake time: 35 minutes

Serves 4

1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 ¼ lb ground turkey (I used ground chicken)
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp garlic powder
½ tsp dried thyme
¼ tsp paprika
1 cup low-sodium beef broth
Kosher salt
Ground pepper
1 ½ lb (2-3 large) sweet potatoes (cubed & boiled or softened in the microwave (my preference… since it cooks while you’re doing something else with no need to peel or dice)
½ cup buttermilk (since I didn’t have I used milk plus 1 tbsp lemon juice – just let it sit for a few minutes to thicken)
2 egg whites
 2 tbsp shredded reduced fat cheddar or Swiss cheese
1 tbsp grated Parmesan

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F/175°C and lightly coat a glass or ceramic gratin/casserole dish with oil spray.

2.  Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Add the onions and garlic and sauté, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes or until the onions are softened and translucent.  Add the ground turkey or chicken and crumble as you drop it into the pan.  Increase the heat to high and cook, stirring for 4 minutes or until the meat is browned.

3.  Stir in the tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, thyme and paprika.  Cook, stirring  for 2 minutes to form a sauce.  Add the broth and continue cooking for another 3-4 minutes or until the meat is cooked through and a light sauce forms.  Taste for seasoning and add salt and pepper as needed.

4.  In a large bowl, mash the cooked sweet potatoes (if you used a microwave, just scoop out the flesh and toss the peel) with the buttermilk until smooth.  Season with salt and pepper.

5.  In another bowl, preferably metal, since it retains the cold, beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt on high speed for 4 minutes or until the mixture is “stiff but not lumpy”  (I only needed 2 minutes, so it depends on your mixer).   They should hold firmly to the side of the bowl when tilted.

6.  Fold the egg whites, one third at a time gently into the sweet potato mixture until all the egg whites are just incorporated and not deflated.

7.  Spread the meat mixture into the prepared casserole dish and top with the sweet potato mixture.  Sprinkle with the cheeses and bake, uncovered for 30-35 minutes or until the potato topping is puffed and browned around the edges. 

Serve immediately   (Ruth’s note:  my Honey loved the cheese topping, I’d make mine without cheese next time.  Otherwise… delicious.)

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