Lentil Shepherd's Pie
It's rather interesting observing your taste buds change when forging further down the plant-based path. Vegan substitutes completely and utterly satisfy me, tasting like the "traditional" versions, even if they are full of lentils and mushrooms. Kind of cool - how you can retrain your brain and taste buds to like what you put in front of them, as much as you liked the original. Plus there's the even freakier phenomenon, that if you don't like something originally, then just simply eat more of it. Sounds wacky, but the more you eat something the more the taste will grow on you and the more you will crave it. Because remember folks, the foods you eat today, will be the foods you crave tomorrow ( - Dr Neal Bernard). Anyway, this is an unbelievably delicious Shepherd's Pie in my opinion - that is a perfect plant-based alternative and is just if not MORE delicious, then the original!!
- 1 onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 carrot, top and tailed
- 10 button mushrooms
- 1/2 bunch kale, leaves only
- 1 celery stick
- 2 x 400g tins brown lentils, drained and rinsed
- 1 heaped tsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- salt & pepper to season
- 5 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
- 1 knob of vegan butter (optional)
- splash of plant mylk (unsweetened)
- vegan cheese (optional)
- tomato sauce, to serve
- Pre-heat the oven to 200C.
- Place the first five ingredients into a food processor and whiz until only small pieces of kale remain. Pulsing here can be a good idea, as you don't want to over-blend, turning it into mush.
- Tip the chopped veggies into a fry-pan, and water sauté until soft and the kale is wilted.
- Meanwhile, boil the potatoes until tender and falling apart when pierced. Drain and mash with the plant mylk and vegan butter (if using) until smooth and soft. Also, season with salt and pepper.
- To the veggie mixture, add the mustard, lentils, and garlic powder, mixing to combine. Season with salt and pepper. When mixing - it's okay to somewhat mash the lentils.
- Grease a baking dish that will hold your pie. Add in the lentil-veggie mixture, compacting and smoothing over to form a flat surface your potato can land on. Add the potato and spread over the surface of the pie. If you so desire, grate over some vegan cheese.
- Bake in the oven for 30 minutes - or until brown and crispy. Delicious with a squirt of tomato sauce and a crunchy salad.