An Original Recipe
I know I’ve already mentioned this but shepherd’s pie, or pastel de papas, is a very typical dish in Argentina. We use ground beef. Of course, it originates from the British shepherd’s pie, made with ground mutton, and cottage pie, made with ground beef. Pastel de papas is something I always loved but I now as a vegetarian I can’t eat it anymore. This is one of the things I wanted to try making using ground seitan, possibly my favorite meat substitute.
Yield: 2 servings
Seitan Shepherd’s Pie
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- ½ onion
- 2 medium carrots
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 4 ounces ground seitan
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons tomato purée
- 2 tablespoons wine
- Pepper, to taste
- Mashed potatoes (recipe below)
- Preheat the oven to 350F (177C).
- Line a skillet with ½ cup of broth. Add the onion and carrots. Sauté until you can easily pierce the carrots with a fork.
- Add the peas and stir well. Cook for a few minutes until the peas are thawed.
- Stir in the seitan.
- Whisk the cornstarch into the remaining ½ cup of broth and pour the mixture into the skillet.
- Stir in the tomato purée and wine, stirring until thick and almost all of the liquid has evaporated.
- Spoon the mixture into ramekins and top with the mashed potatoes.
- Place the ramekins on a baking sheet and bake in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes or until the tops are slightly golden.
- 2 medium white potatoes, peeled
- ½ cup almond milk (or other)
- Cube the potatoes and cook them in a pot of boiling water until tender.
- Using a handheld mixer beat the potatoes until no lumps remain (or desired consistency if you want lumps).
- Add the milk and continue to beat until creamy. Add any salt if desired.
Comments: I was quite satisfied with the turnout of my original recipe. There are a few changes I plan to make for next time. First, more wine! When I was cooking the seitan mixture, there was a strong smell of wine and in my mind I could savor it. However, it turned out there wasn’t a very strong wine taste. Seitan on its own doesn’t taste like much; like tofu, it soaks up the flavor of what it’s cooked with. Therefore, for next time, I plan on at least doubling the amount of wine used. Also, while I was cooking I was wondering what other spices besides pepper to add but I wasn’t very sure of what to put in it. I might try adding oregano, paprika and/or cayenne pepper next time.