As I mentioned, I have been cooking up a storm the past few weeks, and all of it has centered on using BBQ sauce in unusual ways. After I received the sauces from Kolander Grubb’s, I spent the first couple of days just brainstorming what I would make that could use the sauce in non-traditional ways. I had a handful of ideas immediately, but felt like I still needed to push the envelope a bit further. Could I take a non-spicy cuisine and make it into spicy food? With a BBQ sauce?!
In talking with my spouse, I asked “What is the least spicy cuisine you can think of?” We came up with English, Irish and French. Hmmm… that gave me an idea. I then poured through my copy of Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan. I came across a recipe for Hachis Parmentier. This looked an awful lot like a Shepherd’s Pie to me, but perhaps a bit more upscale. Being the Twice Cooked gal that I am though, I knew that I could make this recipe by pulling together items from my fridge. It isn’t the French version, but more likely the Irish peasant version. The filling was rich and flavorful, with just enough heat to make it interesting. This meal was such a hit that it was all gone in one sitting, leaving some asking for more. I now know to make WAY more next time.
Spicy Shepherd’s Pie
2 T. olive oil
1/2 yellow onion, minced
2 carrots, peeled and thinly sliced
1 large red jalapeño pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
1/2 each large red and green bell peppers, seeded and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 lb. lean ground beef
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 c. Habanero BBQ sauce
4 c. beef broth
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent. Add the remaining vegetables and cook until slightly soft, about 5-7 minutes. Add the beef and garlic and continue to cook until browned. Whisk together the BBQ sauce with 1 cup of the broth and then add it to the pot with the remaining broth. Cook over medium heat maintaining a simmer until the sauce has reduced by half and become somewhat thickened. See below for continued instruction.
1 lb. new potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 c. whole milk
1/4 heavy cream
4 T. butter
1/2 c. grated cheese (I used jalapeño gouda)
salt and pepper
While your filling above is cooking, boil your diced potatoes in heavily salted water until fork tender. Drain. Either mash or put through a ricer. Add the remaining ingredients and stir until combined and creamy.
Once the filling has thickened, pour into a casserole dish. Spread the potatoes evenly on top, using your fingers to press into place, if necessary. Cook for 20-25 minutes until the topping has browned. Serve immediately.
With this I served some red cabbage (the remainder of what I had left over from the Asian Slaw) that I braised in 2 cups of beef broth and about 1/4 cup of the habanero sauce with salt and pepper. I put it in the oven and let it cook at the same time as the shepherd’s pie. It was delish!