Sep 25, 2013

Shepherd's Pie (Filipino-style)

I love Arroz a la Cubana! It's a Filipino classic comfort food that arrived in our country by way of Spain. The Philippine version typically consists of rice, ground beef sauteed with vegetables such as onions, garlic, tomatoes, diced potatoes (or bell peppers) and carrots and served with a fried egg and fried plantains on the side. The meat-vegetable mixture for Arroz a la Cubana is not only flavorful, it's quite versatile too as I can use it to make other dishes to give them a distinct Pinoy (Filipino) flair.

An example would be the Stuffed Bell Peppers (Pinoy-style) where I use this meat mixture as the stuffing. It truly is awesome and those who have tried it has given it rave reviews.
So, I thought why not use the Arroz a la Cubana meat mixture as well to make  a Pinoy version of Shepherd's (Cottage) Pie. I wasn't sure at first if it would work but when I served it my whole family gave it a nod of approval and the rest is history. The Arroz a la Cubana can be prepared ahead and refrigerated and when it's time to use it just reheat on the stove top. So here it is - Filipino-style Shepherd's Pie - make it and let us know if you like it. Enjoy!

For the Mashed Potato Topping


3 pounds Potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
Water, just enough to cover the potatoes
1 Tablespoon Salt
4 Tablespoons Butter (room temp) 
1/3 cup Milk
Grated or shredded Parmesan Cheese (about 1 cup or to taste) 
Extra Salt and Ground Pepper, to taste


Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water. Add 1 tablespoon Salt and bring to a boil. Simmer until potatoes are tender about half an hour.  

Drain the potatoes and place them in a large bowl and mash with a potato masher until smooth. Add the milk and butter and combine well using a wooden spoon. If you have a mixer and would rather use that (which is what I usually do), then place the drained potatoes on the mixing bowl and break it down into small pieces and then add the butter and milk and blend well. You can mix the cheese in at this point or alternatively, you can just sprinkle it on top before baking. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

For the Arroz a la Cubana Meat Mixture


2 Tablespoons Olive oil
3 Garlic cloves, chopped 
1 medium onion, chopped
2 Plum (Roma) tomatoes, diced   
1/2 lb ground  Beef 
1/2 lb ground  Pork  
4 Tablespoons Light  Soy sauce
Ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 large red Bell pepper, diced 
1  small Carrot, diced
1/2 cup Raisins
1/2 cup Peas


Heat the oil in a large frying pan or skillet. Sauté the garlic and onion for about a minute. Add the diced tomatoes and cook until the onions and tomatoes have softened about 5 minutes. Stir in the ground beef and pork. Crumble with a fork to prevent clumping. Season with soy sauce and black pepper and cook until the meat has turned brown. Add the red bell pepper and carrots and then simmer covered for about 5-8 minutes or until the veggies have softened.

Uncover then stir in the raisins, raise the heat and cook for a further 3-5 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the peas and cook for another couple of minutes. Adjust the seasoning, if needed.

To Make the Shepherd's Pie

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Place the meat and vegetable mixture on a 9x13 glass baking dish or a similar casserole dish.  Spoon the mashed potatoes over the meat and vegetables. Bake in the oven for about 30 minutes or until the potatoes have lightly browned on top and the meat mixture is bubbling. Serve from the baking dish. 

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  1. Fried plantains are one of my favorite things and I love that you serve this with your Filipino style shepherds pie. Would never have thought to put raisins in this.

  2. I'm surprised this doesn't have any comments yet- I tried this last night and it's DELICIOUS. My boyfriend is usually extremely picky about veggies that he eats, but mixed in with the delicious beef/potato mixture he didn't mind too much :) Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe.


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