I’ve seen some variations of shepherd’s pie, Southwest shepherd’s pie, pastor pie, and similar recipes and they all sounded amazing. I decided to kind of Frankenstein a recipe together with the structure of traditional shepherd’s pie (potatoes, meat, yummy sauce) but swapping lamp for ground pork, potatoes for sweet potatoes, and traditional herbs for spicier Southwest-inspired flavors.
This Southwest sweet potato shepherd’s pie was… GOOD. I’m not just saying that. I had reservations, but it was a winner. It actually got the coveted position on my recipe list of the yellow dot that indicates it needs to be in the rotation often. I actually plan to double the recipe the next time I make it since there just wasn’t enough of it for the leftover meals I totally could have eaten. That’s the sign of a good dish, imo.
You can also conserve dishes by using a cast iron skillet (this is the one I use). Then my next sweet potato adventure will be trying these purple sweet potatoes that are super rich in color.
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Southwest sweet potato shepherd’s pie
- 2 lbs sweet potatoes, cut into thirds with skins on
- 2 tbs butter
- Salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced small
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lb ground pork (spicy or mild)
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons tomato paste
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen peas
- 1/2 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
- Add the sweet potatoes to a large pot of cold salted water and bring it to a boil. Boil for 20 minutes, until fork tender. Drain and set aside to cool slightly. When cool to the touch, remove the skins, which should slide off easily. In a bowl (or the same pot), add the sweet potatoes, butter, and salt and pepper to taste. Mash with a potato masher or with a mixer.
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- While the sweet potatoes are cooking, prepare the filling. Place the oil into a 12-inch saute pan and set over medium high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onion and carrots and saute for about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and stir. Add the ground pork, salt, and pepper and cook no longer pink, breaking up the pieces as it cooks.
- Sprinkle the meat with the flour and toss. Add the tomato paste, chicken broth, Worcestershire, smoke paprika, cumin, and cayenne and stir to combine. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer slowly for about 5 to 10 minutes until the sauce is thickened slightly. It may already be a little thickened already.
- Add the corn and peas to the pork mixture and spread evenly into a 9.5 inch glass pie dish. Top with the mashed sweet potatoes, sealing around the edges to prevent any spillage. Place on a parchment lined sheet pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until the sweet potatoes begin to brown. Cool for about 10 minutes before serving.