Shepherd's pie is a simple casserole containing meat and vegetables and then topped with mashed potatoes. The casserole is baked in a hot oven until the mashed potatoes are browned and the filling bubbling.
To make shepherd's pie using leftover mashed potatoes, brown 1 pound of ground beef with one chopped onion and one clove of garlic, minced. Add 1/4 teaspoon of dried thyme, 1 tablespoon of flour and 2 tablespoons of ketchup to the meat and stir until well mixed. Add 1/2 cup of water and one 10-ounce package of frozen mixed vegetables. Cook until the vegetables are heated and the liquid thickens. Spoon into a baking dish, top with 3 cups of mashed potatoes, and bake at 450 degrees Fahrenheit until the potatoes are browned.
To make shepherd's pie using fresh potatoes, bring water to a boil, and add 4 potatoes that have been peeled and cut into chunks. Boil until fork tender, and drain the water. Mash the potatoes, and add 1 tablespoon of butter, 1 tablespoon of minced onion, and 1/4 cup of cheddar cheese. Mix well, salt and pepper to taste, and set aside.
Bring a pot of water to a boil and add 5 chopped carrots. Boil until soft enough to mash. Mash the carrots, and set aside.
Cook 1 onion, chopped, in 1 tablespoon of oil. Add 1 pound of ground beef and brown. Drain off the fat, and add 2 tablespoons of flour, 1 tablespoon of ketchup and 3/4 cup of beef broth. Bring to a boil, and simmer for five minutes.
Add the meat to a baking dish. Top the meat mixture with mashed carrots and the mashed potatoes. Sprinkle the top with 1/4 cup of cheddar cheese. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes or until browned.