I am a group of peeps who can say this on St. Patty’s Day and it actually be true! While my family has been here in America for generations, my ancestors came directly from Ireland many (and by many I mean many) years ago. While that Irish accent and those Irish traditions have mostly evaporated from my family, the red hair, fair skin, and freckles has transcended generations (both my brother and sister fit this description)!
I guess you can say I am like most people these days because even though my ancestors came from Ireland, they also came from Germany, Scotland, Switzerland, England and France. So I would bet that it is safe to say there are only a *few* people these days that are full blood Irish! I guess those ‘kiss me’ shirts should be changed to “Kiss Me I’m 100% Irish”! Wink. Wink.
And even though those Irish traditions are long lost, I do love
learning about celebrating other cultures and heritages when various holidays roll around. So if you are looking for a great Irish inspired recipe to make for St. Patty’s Day Saturday, Shepherd’s Pie is a great classic recipe loved by all! I love this version made with ground turkey and sausage (the sausage is a must, it gives it so much flavor and I even used turkey sausage) and is topped with a beautiful sweet potato mash mixture!
Sweet Potato and Turkey Shepherd’s Pie
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cook Time: 40 minutes Wait time: 5 minutes Serves: 6
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 large baking potato, peeled and cubed
2 large carrots, peeled and diced
1 cup half and half cream (or milk)
1/2 cup sour cream
1 pound ground turkey
½ pound sausage
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 1/3 cup herb-seasoned stuffing mix
1 ½ cups frozen mixed vegetables
salt and black pepper to taste
½ cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon paprika
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Lightly grease a 2-quart, deep-dish casserole pan.
Place the sweet potato, russet potato, and carrot in large pot. Add enough water to cover the vegetables. Place pot over medium heat and bring to a boil. Cook until tender enough to pierce with a fork, 8 to 10 minutes; drain.
Place the drained potato and carrot mixture in a large mixing bowl; mash lightly. Add the 1/2 cup half and half cream and sour cream. Blend the potato mixture with an electric hand mixer set to medium until smooth and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the turkey and sausage in the hot oil until browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Add the onion, celery, garlic, and poultry seasoning. Cook until the turkey and sausage is cooked through and no longer pink. Increase the heat to medium-high. Pour the chicken stock into the turkey mixture. Whisk together the remaining half and half cream and flour until smooth. When the chicken stock begins to boil, add the flour mixture to the stock and stir until it thickens. Remove from heat and stir in Worcestershire sauce.
Pour the turkey mixture into the bottom of the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle the stuffing mix over the turkey mixture. Arrange the mixed vegetables atop the stuffing mix. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon the potato mixture over the vegetables, spreading to cover all the way to the edges of the dish. Top potatoes with cheese, nutmeg, and paprika.
Bake in preheated oven until top is slightly browned, about 20-30 minutes. Allow to rest 5 minutes before serving.
Adapted from Food on the Table